Art Almanac congratulates Catherine O’Donnell, the 2024 overall winner of the $15,000 acquisitive Blacktown City Art Prize for her work titled Gilded Communities, which will become part of the Blacktown City Art Collection.
Once synonymous with state housing and western Sydney, this style of fibro houses is now slowly being phased out and replaced. By gilding these small models in gold leaf, the houses become treasures, speaking to issues around housing affordability, architecture, and suburbia.
This year, the Blacktown City Art Prize received 381 from across Western Sydney and Australia, with special consideration given to artworks that reflect upon the diverse history, environment of Blacktown and First Nations stories of the area. The works span a range of styles and media, including drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, and photo- and mixed-media.
The independent judging panel comprising of Venessa Possum (artist and CEO at Blue Mountains Culture and Resource Centre), Amani Haydar (author, visual artist, and advocate for women’s health and safety) and Luke Létourneau (Curatorial and Collections Lead at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre) commented that “The 2024 Blacktown City Art Prize is a joyful expression of colour, place and identity. We were impressed with the calibre of entrants and it was not an easy feat picking the winners!”
Blacktown City Art Prize Winners:
Catherine O’Donnell, Gilded Communities
Main Prize Highly Commended:
Virginia Keft, This colony thrives in a landscape of NO
First Nations Prize:
Nathan Dawson, Loss of Identity/Culture
First Nations Prize Highly Commended:
Jacqueline Jacky, That Place They Had (Part 1)
Local Artist Prize:
Anjali Sharma, Momentary Threads of Youth
Local Artist Prize Highly Commended:
Jack and Noel, Red Soil of Blacktown
Early Career Artist Prize:
Mina Lee, Here comes trouble
Early Career Artist Prize Highly Commended:
Tahlia Henderson, Seeking Shelter in a sudden drenching
Carissa Karamarko, Surprise Birthday Cake
The Blacktown City Art Prize finalist exhibition is on view at The Leo Kelly Blacktown Arts Centre, Sydney, until 15 April 2024. Visitors can vote for their favourite artwork in the People’s Choice Prize, with the winner announced in the final week of the exhibition.