From Andrew Frost…
The Redlands Konica Minolta Art Prize has a unique structure as it hands out $35,000 in prize money in three categories: a guest curator is appointed to make a selection of the work of 20 mature and mid-career artists. Those mid-career artists then select a young or emerging artist whose work is shown alongside their own. This year’s curator is Tim Johnson who joins recent curators who include Lindy Lee, Julie Rrap and Imants Tillers in curating an intriguing set of finalists. The question around the prize is always about detecting a trace of influence between the older and younger artist’s work – is it obvious or oblique? Is it just surface appearance or is the connection more one of philosophy?
A curious aspect of this year’s selection is that senior artist Ian Millis gets two bites of the proverbial pie, once as a solo artist selecting Alex Wisser as his younger counterpart, then as part of his collaborative partnership with Lucas Ihlein choosing Nathan Thompson. Other interesting combinations can be found in Carolyn Rothwell’s selection of Sarah Contos and Locust Jones’s match up with Robin Hungerford. Also of note is internet identity Scott Redford’s selection of Sydney artist Dylan Quirk, recently relocated to the Gold Coast, as his youthful doppelganger. There are plenty more to ponder, and a interesting mix up of artists from Pip and Pop’s psychedelic Johnson-esque mandala, to Reg Mombassa, NAS hero and perennial favourite of SMH readers.
Until May 15
National Art School Gallery, Darlinghurst
Pic: Pip & Pop (Tanya Schultz), Standing in the Sky, 2014. Giclee print, 150 x 150 cm, Courtesy the artist.