Sunshine Coast Art Prize winner announced
  • Wednesday 23 July 2014

Caloundra Regional Gallery was abuzz last night with the highly anticipated announcement of the Sunshine Coast Art Prize winner. Margaret Loy Pula was named the winner of this prestigious national art prize.

Margaret said that her winning work, Anatye (Bush Potato) represents her father’s dreaming and is a series of fine, almost microscopic dots.

"Growing up in the small outstations at Utopia, outside Alice Springs, I would watch the bush potato vines grow after the rains and the women who would then dig up the vines and cook them in the hot coals of a fire.

"This painting is about my culture it is from my father’s country, that country is called ‘Unjangola, it is north of Utopia, really desert country,’ Margaret said.

Margaret has been exposed to art for most her life. She is the daughter of well-known artist Kathleen Petyarre and the mother of Abie Loy Kemarre, also a rising star from the Utopia region. Both Abie and Margaret were taught to paint by Kathleen. Her aunties are the Petyarre sisters, all of whom are well-established and well-known artists.

Fiona White’s emotive portrait, In Your Arms, was awarded a Highly Commended by this year’s judge Maura Reilly. Hailing from Woy Woy NSW, Fiona has been a finalist in the prize before and was thrilled with her win.

Sunshine Coast Council, Cultural Heritage and Collections Manager, John Waldron said that the calibre of work that is entered in the prize, exceeds expectations each year.

"Now in its sixth year, the Prize has established itself as one of the signature art events on the Coast’s calendar and the national platform attracts industry professionals and judges such as Maura Reilly," John said.

The Sunshine Coast Art Prize for 2011 is currently being exhibited at the Caloundra Regional Gallery until the 11 September, open Wednesday to Sunday from 10am until 4pm.