'Bedhan Lag: Land of the Kaiwalagal' (2019) by Brian Robinson.

Geelong Gallery distributes acquisitive print awards

October 17, 2019 BY

The winners of the 2019 Geelong acquisitive print awards were crowned by Geelong Gallery director and chief executive officer Jason Smith last month.

Teho Ropeyarn took out the Geelong acquisitive print award ($5,000), while Brian Robinson was awarded the Ursula Hoff Institute award (acquisitive).

Marian Crawford walked away grinning after securing a five-day printmaking residency at Queenscliff Gallery and Workshop, an opportunity which coincided with the arthouse’s recent Peebles Print Prize.

Teko Ropeyarn’s winning relief print “Lukuyn Apudthama” (2017) refers to the blood connection maintained through the Injinoo Ikya Aboriginal language.

According to Teho’s artist statement, the work shines a light on the ancestral relationships between the four Injinoo clans who have lived on traditional lands for thousands of years.

“The four clans are represented through the four large red male ceremonial ‘U’ shaped markings: these same marks were painted onto me when I participated in traditional Injinoo dances.

“The spirit stream depicted contains the totems from each clan including the freshwater turtle of the Ankgamuthi nation, the crocodile of the Yadhaykana nation, the dingo of the Atambaya nation, and the land goanna of the Gudang nation.”

The judging panel – which included Danny Lacy (Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery), Trent Walter (Negative Press), and Lisa Sullivan (Geelong Gallery) – said Teho’s work was “outstanding”.

“It was a work that we kept coming back to for its visual power and strength of storytelling. It elicited a strong physical and visceral response due to its complex visual language and its themes of connection and reconciliation which are more important than ever.”

Brian Robison’s work “Bedhan Lag: Land of the Kaiwalagal” (2019) was lauded for its impressive scale, while Marian Crawford’s work “Diffraction” (2018) was hailed for its use of historical images from the State Library of Queensland’s collection.

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