The Australia Council for the Arts has announced eight remarkable artists will be recognised for their significant contributions to the cultural and artistic fabric of the nation.

The prestigious annual Australia Council Awards celebrate the life-long and continued contributions of artists in music, literature, community arts and cultural development, emerging and experimental arts, visual arts, theatre, and dance.

Among the list of awardees in 2017 is renowned designer, jeweller, curator, and UNSW Art & Design graduate, Susan Cohn, who has received the Australia Council Visual Arts Award.     

Cohn shares the status of Australia Council Award winner with seven further exceptional Australian creative practitioners in 2017 who include Kate Grenville (Lifetime Achievement in Literature), Lyn Williams (Don Banks Music Award), Stephen Page (Dance Award), Madeleine Flynn (Emerging and Experimental Arts Award),  Rosemary Myers (Theatre Award), Steve Mayer-Miller (Ros Bower Award for Community Arts and Cultural Development), Ali Kadhim (Kirk Robson Award for Community Arts and Cultural Development).

Federal Minister for the Arts, Senator The Hon. Mitch Fifield, congratulated the 2017 award recipients and said these impressive artists are at the forefront of their chosen practice and are well-deserving of these prestigious awards.

“Honing their craft over many years,” Minister Fifield said, “these diverse artists are committed to their practice, playing an important and innovative role, pushing boundaries to challenge audiences here and abroad”.

Australia Council Chair, Rupert Myer AO, said these leading artists have been honoured for representing the finest artistic traditions and cultural expressions in their area of practice.

“These awards are an important way of acknowledging the role of artists in the life of our communities, and many of the past recipients have said how meaningful it was to be nominated by their peers,” Mr Myer said. “Widely respected both here and abroad in their art forms, the 2017 Australia Council Award recipients join a distinguished group of artists who are wonderful ambassadors for Australian art.”