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Judy Parker wins Conceptual Photography Prize

The Australian Photographic Society has announced Canberra photographer, Judy Parker, has won the second $10K Mullins Australian Conceptual Photography Prize (MACPP).

Dumpster Sketchbook: Waterside by Judy Parker.

Parker, who joined the Canberra Photographic Society in 2007, won for her triptych image Dumpster Sketchbook: Waterside.

‘Recently I took a series of photographs of the side panels of a large open container at a local recycling centre. The markings had a wonderfully strong graphic quality, red rust-lines on a silver-painted surface: a calligraphy of wear and tear,’ Parker’s concept statement said. ‘When I processed my images, I was intrigued by the way sections of the random patterns suggested a series of semi-abstract coastal landscapes, each quite different. I modified three of these to reinforce the reference and combined them as a triptych. Our minds are not limited to the literal. They can equally re-identify and re-imagine.’

The prize was judged by three leading female photographers – Jacqui Dean, Judith Nangala Crispin, and Julie Williams. The winners were announced at the virtual presentation of the finalists’ exhibition at Magnet Gallery, in Melbourne, which has acquired Parker’s winning image.

WA fine art photographer, Louise Alexander, a first-time entrant, received the Emergent Designs Award for her work, Beige Chair.

Beige Chair by Louise Alexander.

Beige Chair is about not wanting to be seen. Times when you just want to hide,’ Alexander’s concept statement says. ‘In a world where we all feel the need and the pressure to be visible and accountable there is little room to hide. This image was made in honour of the artist’s father who loathed the colour beige. He believed people start to wear beige as they get older, as if the colour was running out of them.’

Lastly, Tasmanian contemporary photographer, Anne O’Connor, won the Momento Pro Award for her work entitled The Price of Water.

The Price of Water by Anne O’Connor.

‘Rainwater is free, but if it declines, rivers dry up & earth suffers. A cost far beyond water ensues, as hope dwindles, waiting for the life-giving gift of water. We all need it, this blood of the land, running through the veins of the entire planetary system. It is priceless. The black spots on the patterned background are created by raindrops on sand. The hand stitching represents the blood of both humanity & the land, in their struggle for survival, as the planet dries up beneath them without rain, in this time of drought.’

All 34 finalists’ images are showing at Magnet Galleries, which is currently closed due to lockdown measures. Images can be viewed online here.

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