Inaugural Blue Mountains Print Prize makes its mark

The inaugural Blue Mountains Print Prize was held at the Blue Mountains Creative Art Centre in Glenbrook in November with 68 entries and a large number of enthusiastic printmakers and community members attending.

The exhibition was curated by Katherine Kennedy, printmaker and teacher, and the lead sponsor was Gallery ONE88 in Katoomba.

Funds raised from the exhibition will provide materials for the centre's new printmaking studio and encourage development of a local community of printmakers.

The entries were judged by Gary Shinfield, an internationally recognised printmaker, while printmaker Samara Kendall, of NSW TAFE, officially opened the exhibition. Both traditional printmaking and contemporary entries were submitted including etchings, aquatints, linocuts, mono prints, photopolymer etchings, gelli plate mono prints, textiles, installation with audio, artist books, found object assemblages, woodcuts, eco prints, emboss, wood lithography, silkscreen and drypoint.

Heather Dunn was the recipient of the major prize for her monoprint Chinese Whispers, Golden Gully and for Fragile, an eco print. Dunn will be exhibiting at Gallery ONE88 in Katoomba in 2020.

The second prize of a two-week art residency in Victoria was won by Gala Jane for her etching and a cash third prize was awarded to Janis Melville for an artist book of etchings, woodcuts and collographs. The adult highly commended winners were Maeve Dunnett (collograph), Jacqueline Taylor (linocut) and Liz Harriott (woodcut, colour roll and linocut).

Youth award winner, Claudia Caldis, also received the highly commended Award for her linocut, Contentment. Claudia received a printmaking mentorship with the resulting work to be exhibited at Nepean Creative and Performing Arts High School in the Executive Foyer Exhibition in 2020.

Lamar Lockhart Smith was awarded highly commended for his print, The Bike Ride, and received an art paper pack courtesy of Artsup Kingswood.