60 finalists named for the 2020 Bowness Prize
From over 1,000 entries submitted for the 2020 William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize, the judges have selected a shortlist of 60 contemporary Australian photographs. Now in its 15th year, the prize is an annual survey of contemporary photographic practice in Australia and one of the most prestigious prizes in the country.
The announcement of the $30,000 winner, Smith & Singer People’s Choice Award recipient of $5,000, and the Colour Factory Honourable Mentions will be celebrated at a special event to be confirmed in January 2021.
The judging panel this year comprised acclaimed artist Fiona Hall, NGA Senior Curator of Photography, Dr Shaune Lakin, and MGA Director, Anouska Phizacklea. The judging panel selected the shortlist from over 1,000 entries – the greatest number of entries in the prize’s history.
“We knew this year was going to be like no other,” Anouska Phizacklea commented. “Over the summer period our country was ravaged by bushfires just at the precipice of the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic which has swept across the globe and changed how our society functions and how we live in the world. The dislocation that these events have had on society have been infused into the experience of artists and their practice. Some photographers this year have chosen to tackle the currency of these events, others have works that predate the fires and pandemic – there is an intensity to these works and one can read a pre-and post COVID-19 lens – the shortlisted artists illustrate its impact and the change that we all feel.”
Klari Agar, Belinda Allen, Sam Amar, Riste Andrievski, Emma Armstrong-Porter, Zoe Arnott, Robert Ashton, Narelle Autio, Reza Bagheri, Kate Baker, Charlie Barker, Chris Barry, Chris Bekos, Madeline Bishop, Tom Blachford, Paul Blackmore, Chris Bond and Drew Pettifer, Jesse Boyd-Reid, Jane Brown, Karen Burgess, Jane Burton, Danica Chappell, Ali Choudhry, Peta Clancy, Michael Cook, Nici Cumpston, Matteo Dal Vera and Michael Weatherill, Tamara Dean, Karla Dickens, Stephen Dupont, Louise Faulkner, Jacqueline Felstead, Anne Ferran, Ash Garwood, Amos Gebhardt, Tom Goldner, John Gollings, Philip Gostelow, Helen Grace, Lee Grant, Janina Green, Helen Grogan, Ponch Hawkes, Leila Jeffreys, Shea Kirk, Shivanjani Lal, Kelvin Lau, Honey Long and Prue Stent, Fiona MacDonald, Alister McKeich, Izabela Pluta, Greg Semu, Damien Shen, Slippage, Valerie Sparks, Cyrus Tang, Christian Thompson, Louise Whelan, Amanda Williams, Anne Zahalka
History of the prize
In 2005 the MGA Foundation was established with the aim of supporting MGA and its significant collection. At the time, Bill Bowness was Chair of the Board, and, under his leadership, the Board and the newly constituted Foundation recognised the importance of providing a platform for contemporary Australian photographers to showcase their work, which would simultaneously raise the profile of MGA and its unique commitment to photographic art. The following year the MGA Foundation launched the inaugural William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize to promote excellence in photography across all photographic media and stylistic genres by both established and emerging artists with work produced within the last year.
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