Fairfield City Art Society Inc.
Fairfield Art Society Online Open Art Prize 2021

Individual Prizes Prizes: Any Medium
Judges: Kurt Schranzer and Chelsea Lehmann

The Fairfield City Art Society thanks the judges and their respective academic institutions for their continued support of our exhibitions.

Best-In-Show Prize
No. 55 "Addicted to Detail" 
by Svetlana Panov
Judges Comment: "‘‘Triplopia’ is a psychologically layered portrait that suggests the mutable and faceted, metaphorically split aspects of identity, whether real or imagined. It is a suitable winner for the Peter Adrian Markwick Memorial Prize that addresses issues of mental and emotional function and well-being."

Judges Comment: "‘True to its title, the artwork is ‘addicted to detail’ and exhibits a high degree of technical facility and inventiveness. The artist has successfully created a formally and materially decorative work that evokes the evolutionary growth of an embryonic form into a more complex biological system with floral mutations. Though delicate and fragile in appearance, it’s not difficult to imagine continued growth, proliferation of and incursion by this new organism; in this regard, the question of its benign or more dangerous nature cannot be determined by the judges!

Judges Comment: "This painting of the human figure is an honest investigation of the partly clad model within the life-painting studio. The wiped or brushed plain background is an effective contrast to the painterly and often-times rough, undeveloped brushwork of the figure, creating a sense of ‘incompletion’—a contradictory idiom in finish—with sensibilities a little akin to some early-mid 20th century British figuration (John Minton, Glyn Philpot, Wyndham Lewis, etc.). The visual anchor of the painting, of course, is the model’s phone seen at the artist’s (and viewer’s) eye-level, hence the title ‘Call Waiting’.
Peter Adrian Markwick Memorial Prize: 
No. 49 "Triplopia: My Bipolar Struggle Over Diabetic Vision Loss
by Kim Kilburn
Peter Adrian Markwick Memorial Highly Commended: 
No. 42 "Bear of Unity
by Holly Oakley
Fairfield Local Artist Prize : 
No. 72 "Call Waiting
by Chris Hunter
Highly Commended Fairfield Local Artist : 
No. 38 "Full of things to come
by Lorraine Maggs
Encouragement Award: 
No. 90 "Enzo
by Joaquin Bermudez
"t is heartening to see such diverse examples of art created by a range of artists at different stages in their practice, despite the past year’s difficult circumstances and local government lockdowns. For some artists, these long lockdowns have allowed them to largely ignore the world and ‘hunker down’ in the studio, whilst for others it has been a bane and an impediment to production and mental health. In this regard, congratulations to the contributing artists who have found the time, will, and energy to make and submit work for the 2021 Fairfield Art Prize. 

As judges, we were impressed by the exploration of a wide range of media, themes, and subjects, but were also cognisant of differences in professional and amateur stature, experience, and aptitudes that a prize such as this—with its many categories—embraces, making it a demanding (and even thorny) potpourri to judge. We trust our selection of prize-winners and ‘Highly Commended’ will be understood in this light and satisfy the many that our choice was a “great choice” or incite the oft-asked question of “why that work and not this one?” or more vexingly, “what were the judges thinking?!” As an insight, one of the challenges this year was judging the ‘Traditional’ category, for many technically proficient works that might have fallen within this category were also ‘Works on Paper’—a category itself—and many paintings had feet in two camps, being traditional in genre but more modern or ‘Contemporary’ in approach—perhaps a little expressionist or impressionist in style despite the subject matter and basic pictorial substance (of course, regarding an impressionistic approach, the movement and aesthetic sensibility is almost a hundred and fifty years old… how traditional is that!). 

Finally, it is pleasing to see that the ‘Photographic/Digital’ and ‘Sculpture/Ceramics’ entries are growing in strength and number, complementing the 2-dimensional artworks that constitute the volume of the exhibition. To each artist who has submitted an entry for 2021—and for those ‘making’ on the sidelines—best wishes for the rest of the year and your continuing creative endeavours.

Chelsea Lehmann and Kurt Schranzer