On Friday night I was presented with the unexpected honour of winning the Ian Wellding Emerging Artist prize at this year’s edition of the Gallery M Contemporary Art prize with a couple of my solargraphy pieces depicting the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and the St Paul’s Cathedral. This is rather exciting as this prize wasn’t primarily for photographic work, but rather I was competing against works of art from all genres, including painting, collage and sculpture. I have had some success in the past with contemporary photographic art awards in the past, being recognised in the top 10 contemporary photographic artists in the 2016 edition of the National AIPP awards, and coming runner up in the state awards in 2014, but never in a straight art-based awards.
The images I entered were two solargraphs from a collection of 9 such images that I am holding a solo exhibition for later in the year – so look out for that. Similar images have won me the title of Science photographer of the year in the 2017 National AIPP awards, while these two in particular have not yet featured in those awards. The unique thing about this type of photography are that the exposure times for each image are far and away longer than any normal photograph, allowing for the capture of the sun as it moves through the sky over a period of several months – creating the white lines you see in the sky.
The prize money I received will be put towards a new art project – pretty much the complete opposite of the little pin hole cameras I created to produce this type of work, so look out for that too 🙂