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Art Ushers In Autumn Garden Expo

Filed under Arts News, Breaking News, Front2, Latest News

Judge Graham Smith and South Burnett Mayor Keith Campbell with Robyn Dower’s oil painting “First Harvest”, which won the top prize

March 13, 2019

The annual Wondai Garden Expo Art Competition always features plenty of bunches of flowers, but this year it was a bunch of carrots that caught the judge’s eye.

The top prize-winner was Tingoora artist Robyn Dower, whose painting of a child holding carrots in a garden (“First Harvest”) won the admiration of judge Graham Smith, a Master Pastellist and Fellow of the Royal Queensland Art Society.

Every April, the Wondai Garden Expo committee sponsors an art competition for works with a gardening theme as a curtainraiser to the Wondai Autumn Garden Expo.

This year’s Expo is on April 20-21.

More than 60 artists submitted a total of 113 entries for this year’s art competition, and 13 shared more than $1600 in cash and prizes.

Visitors at the opening night on April 5 were treated to three full galleries of floral-themed artworks.

Elizabeth Greensill, a regular entrant in the competition, missed out on the major prize again this year but as consolation, she won the $150 People’s Choice award – just as she did in 2015, 2016 and 2018.

Art Gallery vice-president Elaine Madill said a very pleasing aspect of this year’s competition was that the number of entries from children increased, which meant the gallery was able to award first to third prizes in all three age categories.

Last year, only five prizes had been awarded in the children’s section, but this year all nine were claimed.

The exhibition was opened by Mayor Keith Campbell, who said he believed events like the Garden Expo and the garden art competition were the heart and soul of smaller communities.

He also believed that art was a great tourist attractor, and said this was a key reason the Council supported both the Wondai and Kingaroy Regional Art Galleries.

“Council contributes more to the arts than just RADF funds,” the Mayor said.

Competition judge Graham Smith said good art should evoke emotion, capture attention and promote a feeling of connection.

He said judging had been difficult because of the many good works entered this year.

“Sometimes artists ask me how they can improve, and I tell them they need to three things,” Graham said.

“Practice. Practice. Practice.”

Garden Expo president Helen Young said the Expo was expecting a record number of stallholders this year, and she invited everyone to come along.

  • The 2019 Wondai Garden Expo Art Competition will remain on display at the Wondai Regional Art Gallery from 10:00am to 4:00pm daily – except for Good Friday and Anzac Day – until the end of April. Admission to view the exhibition is free.

Artist Joy Carter with one of the works she entered in the Wondai Garden Expo Art Competition … 60 artists submitted 113 works this year

* * *

2019 Wondai Garden Expo Art Competition

Senior Competition

  • 1st Prize ($700): Robyn Dower – “First Harvest”
  • 2nd Prize ($400): Kerry Harrison – “Beneath The Canopy”
  • 3rd Prize ($250): Colleen Helmore – “Garden Feast”
  • Highly Commended – Elizabeth Greensill – “Sweet Dreams”
  • Highly Commended – Maggie Spenceley – “I’ll Be Back”
  • Commended – Gwen Olm  – “Water Dragon”
  • Commended – Joy Carter – “Lilliums In My Garden”

Children’s Competition

4-6 Years

  • 1st Prize: Ruth Murray – “Paper Collage Flower”
  • 2nd Prize: Heather Delahoy – “In Bloom”
  • 3rd Prize: Lachlan Greensill – “It’s Raining In My Garden”

7-12 Years

  • 1st Prize ($30): Chloe Sippel – “Sisters”
  • 2nd Prize ($25): Emily Warry – “Water Time At The Garden Shed”
  • 3rd Prize ($10): Siyon Ponnapalli – “Mountain Of Peace”

13-17 years

  • 1st Prize ($30): Amy Murray – “Paper Rose Sculpture”
  • 2nd Prize ($25): Tameka Lagerberg – “The Death Lilies”
  • 3rd Prize ($10): Guinavere Vanston – “Contemplation”

People’s Choice ($150)

  • Elizabeth Greensill – “Sweet Dreams”

Related articles:

Robyn Dower, Wondai Regional Art Gallery vice-president Elaine Madill and Robyn’s sister Kay Gorring were elated about Robyn’s win

Elizabeth Greensill won the $150 People’s Choice Award for her watercolour “Sweet Dreams” … it’s the fourth People’s Choice award Elizabeth has won at the competition in the past five years

The range of works and styles in this year’s competition is very wide … Gallery president Amanda Delahoy Seiler said this etching of magpies was a personal favourite


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