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Wrest Point Art Award celebrates 20 years

2016 marks the 20th anniversary of the popular Wrest Point Art Awards and Exhibition, which was celebrated in April with a cocktail party hosted by awards patron and Federal Group director Julia Farrell.

Launceston artist Helene Weeding was named as this year’s winner of the $13,000 award for her work, “Liminal Landscape”.

Ms Weeding said she was overwhelmed and very honoured to have won the award, after entering the competition for the first time this year.

“It is a very welcome thing to be judged by peers,” she said.

“When you are so close to it, it is hard to distance yourself from it and see it as worthy.”

Ms Weeding said the piece was part of a series of five artworks that she completed for her PhD examination.

“I have been studying and looking at thick dense cloud and fog and mist, and how the landscape becomes shrouded and mystical and makes you feel a little bit lost at times,” she said.

“It is a suspended space, which is, hence, the liminal term.

“When you go into fog or mist for a moment you are suspended between one place and another place, and the works were intended to inspire that feeling.”

Since opening in 1973, Wrest Point has displayed works from local artists in its accommodation and public areas.

“Tasmania’s flourishing creative industries are an important drawcard for visitors to the state,” Ms Farrell said.

“I am certain that this will continue in the future as the arts continue to play a role as one of the drivers of visitation to this very special state,” she said.

Ms Farrell said in addition to creating the Wrest Point Art Awards and Exhibition, Federal Group had supported a number of Tasmanian art events and prizes over the past decades in Tasmania.

“Currently we are the principal sponsor of the Glover Prize, which was held recently in beautiful Evandale and won for a second time by David Keeling,” she said.

A free event, the 2016 Wrest Point Art Awards and Exhibition (8-10 April) provided locals and visitors to the venue with a unique opportunity to view and purchase from a rich and varied range of works, spanning all mediums, in the Boardwalk Gallery.

Visitors were also encouraged to vote in the People’s Choice Award, this year won by Peter Barraclough for his piece, “Cloudy Bay”.

The event supports the Royal Hobart Hospital by donating a work or selection of works from the exhibition, to the value of $3,000, for the hospital’s collection.

Caption: Helene Weeding with her Wrest Point Art Awards 2016 winning piece, “Liminal Landscape”. Photo credit Alastair Bett.

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