Published by: SWELL Sculpture Festival | 24-Feb-2016
Entries now open for the 14th annual SWELL Sculpture Festival, with over $25,000 worth of awards.
Venue: Currumbin Beach
Date: 9-18 September, 2016
Ticket: Free
Web: http://www.swellsculpture.com.au/
: https://www.facebook.com/swellsculpture
What started out as a humble event 14 years ago, has grown to become one of the most prestigious sculpture exhibitions in Australia, with some of the country's most celebrated artists gathering at Currumbin Beach for the annual SWELL Sculpture Festival. SWELL, Queensland's premier outdoor art event, is set to once again showcase a diverse collection of works by more than 50 Australian and international artists to an estimated audience of more than 260,000, from September 9 "“ 18. Artists working across all mediums are now encouraged to submit proposals to exhibit in the 10-day exhibition and to vie for Awards worth more than $25,000. SWELL is inviting artists to submit entries until Monday March 7 and call for submissions both nationally and internationally. SWELL Sculpture Festival founding director and curator Natasha Edwards said the calibre of artists exhibiting at the Festival is a testament to the exhibition's reach. "As SWELL's reputation grows both nationally and internationally, we now attract significant artists from around Australia and the world," Ms Edwards said. "Every year our audience appreciates the diversity and quality of works presented at SWELL. It's a great opportunity for artists to tell their stories and to strive for the awards on offer." Submissions can comprise of completed works, works in progress or concepts. Each is encouraged to be of large scale or have a substantial footprint, be site specific, display ephemeral qualities, invite dialogue around place making or instigate creative conversations around craftsmanship, rich messaging or artistic quirkiness. SWELL welcomes the opportunity to work with artists who would like to explore the liminal boundary of the coastal landscape and those who are keen to break new ground in sculpture presentation. Artist Ingrid Morley's work Lost and Found won SWELL's major $15,000 cash award in 2015, sponsored by City of Gold Coast and judged by the esteemed Professor Nikos Papastergiadis Director of Melbourne's University Research Unit of Public Cultures. Ms Morley says being part of the SWELL experience is an opportunity not-to-be-missed. "Sculpture is a demanding art form - often made with no reason to be," she said. "With large work the risks of making purely from the imagination are high. 'Lost and Found' was no exception, and to be the recipient of the major award at SWELL last year was worth the 'Risk for enchantment'. To make an artwork that I hoped communicated with a public memory, was an important milestone for me. "Towing a sculpture close to two tonnes in weight, with a trailer giving trouble, from the Central Tablelands in NSW to the Queensland Coast, to a deadline, was nerve racking. Arriving at Currumbin Beach to ground staff and volunteers who were organised and friendly problem-solvers, to an exhibition that is ambitious and well-conceived was an experience I would not mind repeating, whatever the outcome." As well as the major $15,000 SWELL Sculpture Award sponsored by the City of Gold Coast, additional awards include the popular $3,000 People's Choice Award, $3,000 Kids' Choice Award, $3,000 Max Fabre Foundation Environmental Awareness Award and $1,500 Jennie Neumann OAM Emerging Artist Award. Judge Professor Nikos Papastergiadis said SWELL brings art to the people. "SWELL is Queensland's premier outdoor sculpture event led and run by a team of committed art lovers," he said. In addition to the awards, SWELL offers artists unparalleled opportunities such as an increased media profile, the chance to establish new industry contacts, professional development, and the potential to sell and commission new works. As well as being an important cultural event, SWELL has grown to become a very significant economic driver for the Gold Coast, attracting more than 260,000 visitors and generating an estimated $6.5 million. SWELL also offers an exciting array of activities including artist talks, kids' workshops, and public programs to complement the unique open-air gallery atmosphere. Set between two iconic headlands at Currumbin Beach, the vast coastal landscape encourages entries of large art forms, artworks that have a substantial footprint, ephemeral or site-specific works. Urban Art Projects are pleased to be supporting this year's SWELL and will offer a mentorship to an artist selected to exhibit in 2016. The recipient will have access to UAP's studio and workshop, and will also receive professional guidance to support skill development from concept design through to a completed artwork. Held at UAP Brisbane, the mentorship program will be conducted at times mutually suitable to UAP and the recipient, and will be equivalent to a total of 18 days (approximately four days a month from May "“ August 2015). Entries for the 2016 SWELL Sculpture Festival close on Monday 7 March. Artists can learn more and apply online at www.swellsculpture.com.au. For more media information please contact Chanelle Rodger at Ruby Public Relations on 5514 8575 / 0423 892 557 or email chanelle@rubypublicrelations.com.au. CURATORIAL PANEL In 2016, the Curatorial Panel will comprise of curator Simone Oriti, Urban Art Projects, and Professor Derrick Cherrie, Director Queensland College of Art and Dr Daniel Templeman, Senior Public Art Officer Brisbane City Council. It will also include delegates from the SWELL organisation, Curator Natasha Edwards and Director Ruth Della.

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