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Unearthed Art Prize 2022 Finalists

Winners Page Graphic

Check out our 26 finalist pieces for our 2022 Unearthed Art Prize.

You've voted, and our winners have now been announced! Congratulations to Liselle Powell and Salvatore Dibartolo for their winning entries into our Unearthed Art Prize. Want to see these works in person? All pieces can be viewed in our exhibition at 130 Bulleen Road, Balwyn North, Melbourne.

All works are 54 x 64 cm, framed and priced at $550.
Enquire here to purchase an artwork.

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Amy Kim b

"Dreamlike – Still Life 1" by Amy Kim
Acrylic on canvas - Available

Amy Kim loves drawing and painting as a method to discover all the unknowns in herself and the world around her. Since studying Fine Art, her life has taken her in many different directions, though her passion for creating never went away. Taking the risk, Amy committed to following her heart in 2020, dedicating herself to practicing and developing her art career. She still pinches herself sometimes to see if it's for real.

The artworks in Amy's 'Dreamlike' series study the balance between the dream and reality in a hopeful, optimistic manner. In Amy's culture (Korean), the term 'Bowl' is often used to describe a person; 'She is a big bowl' means that she has a big dream, big heart or big ambition. Amy used the bottle like shapes as a symbol of individuals that embrace and appreciate what they hold within.

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Brett Jackson

"Under the Radar" by Brett T Jackson
Acrylic on board - Available

Born in Melbourne, Brett Jackson studied at Box Hill Institute, receiving the preliminary Diploma of Art. Having run a boutique Sign and Screenprinting business on the Northern beaches of Sydney for over 20 years, Brett is now living and art making on the Mornington Peninsula.

Brett's art practice involves studio work, outdoor Plein Air painting, life drawing and computer graphics. "Under the Radar" represents a flying sensation – the feeling of escaping and defying capture. Using solid blacks and vibrant colours, these graphic elements create movement and energy.

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Deb Chapman b

"The Freedom of Falling" by Deb Chapman
Mixed media on canvas - Available

Living in regional Victoria on the outskirts of Ballarat, Deb Chapman's works are influenced by her surroundings. She loves the colours of the earth; the copper, mustards, browns and oranges that make her heart sing. After taking up painting two years ago, Deb juggles working part time at her local antique store and her art practice. Her style and idea of the work she wishes to create has only grown and developed since she was a finalist in the 2020 Unearthed Art Prize, at the very start of her art journey.

Deb loves bringing joy to others through her work, and is amazed and pushed to keep believing in her dream to become a full time artist. This piece features the earth, foliage, fairy-wrens and feelings of calm all established in the little country town Deb calls home.

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Gabrielle Tito

"Bloom" by Gabrielle Tito
Acrylic on canvas - Available

Picking up the paint brush about three years ago, Gabrielle was in between jobs, moving to Brisbane, and trying to figure out what the next stage of her life would be. After studying interior design while playing around with painting, Gabrielle is now a full time artist while she renovates her little house in Brisbane.

Gabrielle enjoys painting abstracts florals with bright, contrasting patterns and colours. This piece came about as she was inspired by the idea of a label on a vase called 'Bloom.

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When you see yourself for the first time Gemma Troy 2022 2

"When You See Yourself for the First Time"
by Gemma Troy

Acrylic on canvas - Available

A creative at heart, Gemma Troy loves to write poetry and to paint. She is inspired by nature, her creativity born from the act of going within, and of being present. Having started painting in March 2020, she still feels like she is discovering her own voice and what she loves, enjoying learning and challenging herself.

Gemma's art is alway about going within, and becoming a mirror for her feelings. 'When You See Yourself for the First Time,' represents a point in Gemma's art journey where she felt she was no longer in the road and was now painting for the pure joy of it.

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Indie Draken

"Remember The Now" by Indie Draken
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

An avid artist from a young age, Indie Draken grew up surrounded by talented artists, architects and designers. Though she spent much of her work-life in other fields, her artistic instincts have always been nurtured and encouraged, and more recently Indie has taken the move to art full-time.

Indie's works are a geometric abstract style, inspired by watching her architect dad work on projects, and much of his work has inspired the way Indie paints today. 'Remember the Now' uses her love of architecture and design to create different spaces she feels she can escape to and feel comfortable in. This abstracted spaces come to together to give a sense of both grounding and escapism.

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Jake Savage

"Eye of Expression" by Jake Savage
Mixed media on canvas - Available

Having moved from Cairns to Brisbane for uni, 19 year old artist Jake Savage has recently begun discovering his passion for painting. Jake's work leans towards abstract and neo expressionism, and he usually paints alongside a particular album, allowing the music to inspire his pieces.

This work draws inspiration from some of Jake's favourite artists, particular the works of Jean-Michel Basquiat and Mark Rothko. 'Eye of Expression' was also a chance for Jake to explore and experiment with new artistic mediums, as well as take on the challenge of working to a smaller canvas size.

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Lena Baumgartner B

"Field of Dreams" by Lena Baumgartner
Acrylic on canvas - Available

As a self-taught abstract expressionist artist, Lena has been using art as her 'self-care' mum time after having her first son 5 years ago. Her works are inspired by nature and her surroundings, including past memories of travelling and scuba diving. In 2021, Lena gave herself permission to go 'all in', and allowed herself to be more expressive through her artwork, finding both her painting and herself growing in confidence.

Lena loves using pink in her works, and finds that without it she feels like her artwork is 'angry' and not joyous. 'Field of Dreams' was so named as a friend pointed out that this piece is 'dreamy' and made her want to have a cup of tea while letting her mind wander into dreamland.

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Pi Williams 2

"A trip to see Henri" by Pi Williams
Wool, raffia and fabric on linen - SOLD

Pi Williams is a textile artist living on the NSW Central Coast, creating her works using a combination of punch needle and stitching techniques and adding a variety of textures using wool, fabric and raffia. Her art is created intuitively and is heavily influenced by the natural world around her. Having embarked on her artistic journey two years ago, Pi has built a supportive community and enjoyed sharing her passion teaching online workshops.

'A Trip to see Henri' was inspired by a day trip to Henri Matisse's Life and Spirit exhibition in the Art Gallery of NSW – Pi fell in love with Henri's paper cuts 'drawings with scissors' and wanted to bring this idea into her work.

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Pia Wrigg

"Tell Tales" by Pia Wrigg
Acrylic and oil pastel on canvas - Available

With over 20 years as a graphic and fashion designer, Pia Wrigg has combined this experience with an influence of textile design and folk art practices to inform her artwork. She is a multi-media maker and artist, working with a variety of mediums including printmaking, collage and painting.

Pia let’s bold shapes and colours tell the story, and it is within this framework that 'Tell Tales' breaks down and simplifies shapes to reveal our similarities rather than our differences, these bold colour combinations creating an expression of personal joy.

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Vanessa Ferriggi

"Feminine Intuition" by Vanessa Ferriggi
Acrylic on canvas - Available

Vanessa Ferriggi is deeply passionate about her art and creative journey, and loves to use her art to share the rich feelings and excitement that she experiences when paint hits the canvas. Married with six children and three dogs, Vanessa lives a busy but full life on the Mornington Peninsula – where she first started painting during lockdowns.

Inspired by the beauty and grace of a woman, 'Feminine Intuition' also incorporates influences and inspirations from Vanessa's environment; the ebb and flow of the sea, and the 'feminine' sway in the pops of neon pink and pastel hues.

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Shane Bonsujet

"Third Eye Open" by Shane Bonsujet
Mixed media on board

Born in Zimbabwe where he spent his first 14 years, Shane Bonsujet is a contemporary artist now based in Melbourne, creating works that are inspired by life. With an emotionally driven style that covers outsider art, primitive and naive expressions, as well as touching on traditional inspirations, Shane's goal is for his artwork to feed the soul and inspire the mind.

When Shane first started painting, he wanted to create works that would connect with anybody and everybody from all walks of life. For Shane, great artwork goes beyond how and what it looks like, and is ultimately about how it's connected with. Shane aims to be inclusive and welcoming in the hopes that anyone can connect with this work.

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Kai Hagberg

"Ficus" by Kai Hagberg
Mixed media on canvas - SOLD

Working as both a visual artist and a jeweller in Atherton, Queensland, Kai's multidisciplinary practice spans drawing, painting and sculpture as well as gold and silversmithing. Kai takes a figurative approach in exploring the nuance and emotion of the human subject and natural world

Kai's works, including 'Ficus,' explore the human subject, subtleties of human expression and the connection with the natural world.

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Jimmy Carson

"Brave Train" by Jimmy Carson
Mixed media on canvas - SOLD

Gold Coast based artist Jimmy Carson has been honing his skills in many different forms – Doodling, Canvas Painting, Graffiti, Street art and re-purposing hard rubbish – for quite some years.

Inspired by the element of surprise that graffiti and street art pieces bring to their environment. Along with his son Zephyr’s bravery and obsession with trains, Jimmy created a painting to capture that essence, and to challenge the boundaries of what people consider as acceptable graffiti and art, as well as to inspire others to be brave in making. All aboard the brave train.

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Chiehli Kuo c

"Let the Food Take You to Europe"
by Chiehli Kuo

Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

A self-taught painter living in Brisbane, Chiehli loves to travel and experience different lifestyles. Spurred on by the urge to travel again before turning 30, Chiehli quit her job and travelled to Europe, then to New Zealand for a working vacation of five months, an exciting and wonderful time. After returning to Australia, Chiehli started to paint, bringing the scenery, nature and food she saw during her travels to the canvas.

For Chiehli, painting is like keeping a diary, documenting her experiences and memories into art. This piece is an impression view on what was seen in the windows of many bakeries during her stay in Europe.

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Ebony Taylor

"Disconnecting" by Ebony Taylor
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

Ebony Taylor is a mum of 5 year old twins, a primary school teacher and a business admin for a dental practice she owns with her husband. She loves to sew and has had an online business selling baby comforters. When not busy with everything else, she paints – staying up late most nights.

As a child, Ebony always wanted to be an artist and took folk art classes in her early teens, though she moved away from art during VCE, Ebony has recently started painting again, now just for herself. She is excited to continue her art journey and see where it takes her! Ebony's artwork, 'Disconnecting' conveys a sense of positive solitude, of me-time and self care.

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Art Prize Alanah Jarvis

"Magic on the Sea" by Alanah Jarvis
Oil on canvas - SOLD

As a former scuba instructor, Alanah knows first hand the tranquility of being in or near the water. Through her works she aims to reflect this sense of serenity and calmness, using oil paint as her primary medium she captures the seas, the rolling movements and ever changing light.

'Beyond the Depths' pays tribute to and acknowledges the Australia’s First People throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. A study at the university of Sussex found that navy and pastel pinks are two of the top colours with the most calming affect on our minds, and this piece uses both along with the calming ocean ripples to create a piece that is the embodiment of tranquility and calm for any space.

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Anzhelika Kodratenko

"Woman Portrait" by Anzhelika Kondratenko
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

Anzhelika (Angela) works as a 3D artist and has a strong architectural background, graduating from Odessa State Academy of Civil Engineering and Architecture in Ukraine. After more than ten years away from the brush, she has recently she has returned to the world of Fine Art, and re-awakened her passion for painting. Angela looks forward to discovering new opportunities and continuing to hone and improve her skills in painting and drawing.

Created in monochrome, this portrait aims to catch a singular moment; within which it shows a woman's beauty, conveying her character and integrating her into nature.

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Liselle Powell

"John Forrest National Park II" by Liselle Powell
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

After following a career path in office work, Perth based artist Liselle is now throwing herself at art again. With a love of painting present ever since she was a child, Liselle now finds herself painting in a more journalistic fashion, creating art of what is going on around her, and influenced by her surroundings. Liselle has worked office jobs for project management and engineering companies whilst studying Linguistics, Makeup, and Graphic design,

'John Forrest National Park II' is an attempt by Liselle to capture a memory, specifically a moment in time of family being together. Here she presents the forest as being a live and thriving with beauty, the colours in the landscape staying with her long after she'd left.

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Bridget Burke

"Propagation" by Bridget Bourke
Oil on canvas - SOLD

Living in Fitzroy North, Bridget Bourke works as an early childhood educator, and when she's not working, she's painting. Bridget works primarily with oils and prefers to work small – loving the challenge of a tiny canvas! She began painting about two years ago, focusing on the basics of oil painting and only doing portraits. After being accepted into the 2021 Unearthed Art Prize, Bridget felt determined to step outside her comfort zone and diversify her subject matters and techniques.

Bridget's inspiration for this work comes from the abundance of plants and plant cuttings her partner grows – though she admits to not being the best at keeping plants alive... she has much more fun painting them than watering them! In this work Bridget wanted to create something that draws your eyes in all directions, from the colours in the leaves to the texture in glassware to the shapes of the shadows.

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Paula Starrs

"Coming Home" by Paula Starrs
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

Coming from the Mallee country of Victoria, Paula Starrs loves martinis, family, her dogs and the landscape in which she lives. Having studied visual arts in her younger years, she has recently re-found her passion for painting, inspired by her love of photography and the red earth and colours of the mallee. Paula's style is bold, with strong shadows and earthy tones, reflecting her enthusiasm for life.

Living in a small rural Victorian town in the Mallee, Paula is intimately familiar with the dirt tracks that are the shortcuts between main roads, 'Coming Home' aims to capture the different life cycles of these roads as they constantly change through the seasons.

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Kelly Kondis

"Great Otway II" by Kelly Kondis
Oil on canvas - SOLD

Living in the beautiful countryside between Sherbrooke Forest and the Mornington Peninsula, Kelly Kondis is a self employed artist, short stay host, renovator and bookkeeper. During the pandemic Kelly turned to the canvas as both an escape and respite. After entering the local Dandenong Ranges Open Studios program in 2021, she has been encouraged and validated into taking the plunge as a selling artist.

Kelly is particularly inspired by the temperate rainforests of Victoria, and the moment when the morning haze starts to lift and the clouds rise up – exposing glimpses of blue sky and the water glistens on the foliage like fairy lights.

Ros Gervay b

"Nothing Else Matters" by Ros Gervay
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

Ros Gervay's work explores the concept of connecting and belonging, typically depicting nature in one form or another. Through her work, Ros aims to connect the viewer to the land, often through the simple appreciation of beauty, as well as more complex reflections on the places where we live. Having studied at the College of Fine Arts in 2000, Ros took the specific step into painting after having children, and now teaches and mentors other creatives alongside her own art practice.

Inspired by the power of the ocean, its weight, its sound, and its ability to ground us 'Nothing Else Matters' uses messy strokes and luscious drips to capture the raw and beautiful nature of the coast. To remind us that we are guests here and should hold gratitude for that time.

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Laura Oczós

"Watching Movies That Don’t Exist" by Laura Oczós
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

Up until last year, Laura Oczós worked as a special education teacher while being a solo parent to her 3 year old daughter. After studying fine art, Laura took a 14 year hiatus but started painting again in 2019 – since then she has turned her attention towards being a full time artist.Laura loves travelling, hiking and swimming, watching TV shows and getting excited over DIY cleaning hacks.

She paints imagined landscapes that are autobiographical in nature, and is deeply interested in the dynamic nature of memory – drawing on past and present experiences to create works that combine multiple points of view. 'Watching Movies That Don't Exist' was in particular inspired by tense conversations, misunderstandings and reflective moods, charting an emotional flux of personal conflict while taking composition references from aerial maps and topography.

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Salvatore Dibartolo

"La Bella Figura" by Salvatore Dibartolo
Oil on canvas - SOLD

Moving on from his previous body of abstract works, Salvatore Dibartolo is taking his understanding of colour, shadows and tonal values into his experimentation with oil paints. As a self-taught artists, Salvatore has spent the last 5-7 years experimenting and learning with different mediums and their applications. Recently he has decided to hang up his wings as a flight attendant and focus more on his art practice.

Inspired by the long, hot Italian summers spent at the beach with his grandparents in Sicily, Salvatore enjoyed watching the serious way the locals went about beach-going, armed with tools to ensure they always looked their finest. 'La Bella Figura' visually translates this idea of always wanting to make a good impression.

Suzie Thomson b

"Boranup Forest" by Suzie Thomson
Acrylic on canvas - SOLD

A school teacher living in Brisbane with her partner and two dogs, Suzie began her art journey twelve months ago when she was inspired by an artwork she saw while visiting WA. When she got home she started painting and never stopped. For ten years Suzie was an art director in advertising, before becoming head of art at an all boys school, but until recently had never really worked on her own art practice. Now on long service leave she is living the dream of painting every day.

On holiday in Margaret River in 2021, Suzie took many photos of this amazing forest – the next day, the area was on fire. Suzie is fascinated by the vibrant colours of this landscape, and has painted a couple of different scenes she observed on that day.

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