Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award finalists

HOTA, Home of the Arts has today announced the forty finalist works for the 20th anniversary of the Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award, one of Australia’s most significant awards for contemporary photographic practice.  

The Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award has provided a national platform for emerging and established artists for twenty years. To mark the occasion, a retrospective of previous winners and acquired works will be exhibited alongside this year’s finalists, highlighting the impact of the award over the past two decades.

The 2022 finalists represent an exciting selection of cross-generational and culturally diverse artists working at the forefront of photographic media: Abdul Abdullah, Tarik Ahlip, Anthea Behm, Yuriyal Eric Bridgeman, Kieran Butler, Maria Fernanda Cardoso, Anna Carey, Aaron Chapman, Michael Cook, Ellen Dahl, Lucas Davidson, Jo Duck, Lyle Duncan, Kath Egan, Ash Garwood, Amos Gebhardt, Douglas Lance Gibson, Guy Grabowsky, Tim Gregory, Yvette Hamilton, Petrina Hicks, Naomi Hobson, Samuel Hodge, Eliza Hutchison, The Huxleys (Will and Garrett Huxley), Katrin Koenning, Paula Mahoney, Ali McCann, Mia Mala McDonald, Phuong Ngo, Selina Ou, Hiromi Tango, Angela Tiatia, wani toaishara, Shan Turner-Carroll, Skye Wagner, Carl Warner, Kai Wasikowski, Lydia Wegner, and Jemima Wyman.

Jo Duck. Spiderman waits in Corolla 2022. Finalist, Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award 2022; © Image courtesy of the artist

Highlights include Abdullah’s Interloper, a self-portrait that captures the artist in a fox mask and tracksuit as a nod to an experience of othering, marginalisation, and vilification. The image also presents the artist in proximity to livestock, the property of an unseen landowner. This positioning disrupts a dynamic of possession and implies a threat to, and questioning of, long-held hierarchies. Cook’s Enculturation #2 traces a narrative journey through landscape under an opaque sky. Children are pictured amongst Aboriginal women in a reverse reference to Australia’s Stolen Generation. Cook evokes the potential for Indigenous cultures, and their learnings over millennia, to shift the concerns of white society toward the balance and harmony integral to the heart of First Nations traditions.

Duck’s submission Spiderman waits in a Corolla is part of the artist’s series ‘A Mysterious Parade of Men,’ inspired by Maeve Brennan’s 1962 story for the New Yorker of the same name. The artist imagined a fictional parade and photographed the mysterious men who were either participants or enthusiastic spectators. The Huxleys’ Moonage Daydream explores the fading magic of supernatural worlds in which the artists cast themselves as exquisite outsiders. As queer people growing up in suburban homogenous places, feeling isolated, alone and different, photographs embody these feelings and express a sense of safety in isolation.

Paula Mahoney, Together in the valley, with the shadow of death, 2022, from the series The Landscape Holds Grief. Finalist, Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award 2022. © Image courtesy of the artist

Mahoney’s  Together in the valleywith the shadow of death is from the series ‘The Landscape Holds Grief’ shot in Queenstown, Tasmania. It explores the relationship between history and personal loss, and how grief manifests as an absence. And Turner-Carroll is an Australian artist of Burmese descent. Shan’s practice interrogates both human and non-human nature, alternative forms of social exchange, and interactions between art, artist and viewer. Turner-Carroll’s submission Dad from the series’ Edge of the Garden’ captures the artist’s father in a wearable sculpture produced from materials found on the property Turner-Carroll grew up on, including objects from his past such as old sportswear, dance costumes, curtains, carpets and flowers. The resulting imagery lives in the realm of the uncanny, existing between places and times. 

Judge of the Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award 2022, Isobel Parker Philip said: “The finalists reflect the strength and breadth of contemporary photographic practice. Their work is urgent, emotive and deeply thoughtful. Photography as a medium possesses a unique ability to both reflect and complicate the world around us, and these artists exploit the expressive potential and political force of the medium to full effect. I can’t wait to see the exhibition take shape.”

The Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award will be presented at HOTA Gallery from 17 September 2022 to 8 January 2023.

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