Acclaimed judges secured for Art Prize environmental awards
  • Friday 30 October 2015
sunshine coast art prize, photography, environment

The Sunshine Coast Landscape and Wildlife Photography Award and Sunshine Coast Inaugural Environment Art Award will be announced at the official exhibition opening on Thursday, November 5.

Queensland Museum photographer Gary Cranitch is the judge for the Sunshine Coast Landscape and Photography Award, while contemporary environmental artist and author John Dahlsen, along with University of the Sunshine Coast Senior Lecturer in Art and Design Dr Lisa Chandler, are the co-judges for the Sunshine Coast Inaugural Environment Art Award.

Community Programs Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said this year’s Sunshine Coast Art Prize had attracted outstanding entries to match the high calibre judges.

“The entries received throughout this year’s 10th anniversary Sunshine Coast Art Prize have been exceptional,” Cr McKay said.

“It’s a testament to the reputation of the Art Prize that we have been able to secure Gary Cranitch as the judge of the Landscape and Wildlife Photography Award, sponsored by Sunshine Coast Council Environment Levy.

“This award was introduced to capture the beauty and significance of the environment we have here on the Sunshine Coast and I encourage the community to visit the stunning exhibition.”

The final award in the 2015 Sunshine Coast Art Prize is the Environment Art Award, sponsored by Sunshine Coast Council through the Living Smart Program. This award category includes 20 finalists selected from seven exhibitions as part of this year’s wider Art Prize program.

Cr McKay said the Environment Award was developed as a way of connecting people to the values of our local natural environment.

“Art is a great way for us to develop an understanding of and appreciation for our environment, which is a big part of our journey towards becoming Australia’s most sustainable region - vibrant, green and diverse,” Cr McKay said.

“It is fitting that we have been able to secure contemporary environmental artist John Dahlsen and USC Senior Art and Design Lecturer Dr Lisa Chandler as co-judges for this award.”

Winners of both category awards will be announced on Thursday, November 5 at the official opening of the Sunshine Coast Landscape and Photography Award exhibition at the Arts and Ecology Centre, Maroochy Bushland Botanic Garden. The exhibition runs until November 25.

Visit council’s gallery website for more details.


More about the judges:

Gary Cranitch (Landscape and Photography Award)

Gary’s fascination with photography began at the age of 12 when he built his first darkroom in the laundry. Since then, his 32 year career as a photographer at the Queensland Museum has been a wonderful journey of discovery both on land and under the sea.
Garry Cranitch’s work has been published in Australian Geographic, Popular Science (US), New Scientist, National Geographic online and numerous other publications and journals around the world.
In 2008 Gary was awarded the Canon Australian Institute of Professional Photography Science, Nature and Environment Photographer of the Year. He has been a finalist four times in the Australian Museum Eureka prize for Science Photography and won the Eureka prize in 2015.
Gary has judged at both the AIPP Epson Queensland State Photography awards and the Canon AIPP National Photography Awards.
In 2013 Gary was the principal photographer for the 400 page publication The Great Barrier Reef – A Queensland Museum Discovery Guide – the culmination of four years fieldwork under the sea.

John Dahlsen (Inaugural Environment Art Award co-judge)

John Dahlsen is a contemporary environmental artist and author who studied at the Victorian College of the Arts. He won Australia’s oldest art award, the Wynne Prize, at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 2000 and has won numerous other awards. In 2004 his art represented Australia at the Athens Olympics.
He is a published author An Artist’s Guide to a Successful Career was published by Common Ground Publishing in the US in December 2013. His mid-career memoir: Alpha Academic Press in the US published An Accidental Environmental Artist, in November 2014. He exhibits and is represented in major public and private collections in Australia and internationally.
In 2014 John was awarded a Churchill Fellowship and travelled to Japan in early 2015 to work for five weeks with a master woodblock printer and created a limited edition series of 24 woodblock/digital fusion prints. He continued on to Amsterdam where he researched how Vincent van Gogh was influenced in his art by Japanese woodblock prints.
His environmental art examines the passage of time in the landscape and the place of humankind within it.
John is currently lecturing in visual art at Charles Darwin University, where he is also completing his PhD in environmental art.

Lisa Chandler (Inaugural Environment Art Award co-judge)

Dr Lisa Chandler leads the Arts Research in Creative Humanities (ARCH) cluster at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
Lisa has worked as an educator, graphic designer, gallery director, curator, artist and journalist. She has coordinated and taught courses in art, design and visual communication at the University of the Sunshine Coast, and in commercial and community contexts. She was foundation director of the University Gallery, establishing an extensive exhibition program and curating exhibitions. In 2009, she was invited to teach for a semester at Kyungpook National University, South Korea and in 2010 she was awarded an Australian Learning and Teaching Council citation for outstanding contributions to student learning.
Lisa has published in international journals, written numerous exhibition catalogue essays and her articles have appeared in publications such as Artlink, Australian Art Review, and Imprint.
Lisa has been actively involved in the regional arts industry for many years and has been an advisory group and board member the Sunshine Coast Regional Council Cultural Plan and for various cultural organisations such as RADF, ArtSynC and the Sunshine Coast Youth Arts Research Project. In 2009, she was awarded the inaugural Sunshine Coast Regional Council Australia Day Creative Award for her contributions to design education and creative industries in the region.