Congratulations to all who were recognised last night at the 2019 Tim Olsen Drawing Prize.

Tim Olsen has been encouraging and supporting young and emerging artists to build careers as professional practicing artists since 2001, and generously rewards the winner of this prize with $5,000. Now in its 19th year, the Tim Olsen Drawing Prize at UNSW Art & Design encourages excellence in drawing. This collaboration has been continuously supported by the Olsen Gallery and celebrates students who use drawing as a significant part of their artistic practice.

Candidates are nominated by academic staff and then selected for inclusion in the exhibition and consideration for the Award.

This year’s judge was Fiona McIntosh (Art Advisor, Consultant and Commentator – and UNSW Art & Design alumna)Fiona was accompanied by Katrina Arent (Director, Olsen Gallery). 

The exhibition is on display at AD Space until Saturday 12 October. 

The 2019 finalists:
Patrick McDavitt, Eva Nolan, Alvi Bruce, Lisa Ellen Hughes, Josephine Pereira, Robbie Karmel, Dylan Tinker, Kim Lyle Gallagher, Marleena Oudomvilay, Liana Berzins, Vaughan Wozniak O'Connor, Karan Singh Shekhawat, Lisa Dwyer, Alexander E. S. Ryrie, Xanthe Muston, Robin Elhaj, Stella Laurence, Callum Agnew. 

The 2019 winner: Robbie Karmel 
For a suite of works: “Headbox V Drawings”, “Headbox V”, “Ladder Drawing”, “Ladder Object 

Karmel’s work is impressive for the way it integrates diverse elements such as drawing, sculpture and performance. The drawings themselves are luscious, lyrical, and spirited, strongly suggestive of the performativeintuitive and kinaesthetic processes involved in their making. In this way, the work is reminiscent of Bauhaus stage experiments, offering a sense of play, sensory exploration, costuming and performativity.  

There are three highly commended students: 

L.A.K.R.M Bruce for “This is a Product of Self-Care” 

Bruce’s work is delicate in its form and fabrication, and yet the there is also a rawness to this work. It operates on a personal, diaristic level, exposing the artist’s processing of both psychological and physical realms. It is a thoughtful exploration of drawing within the expanded field, requiring the viewer to consider what materials, techniques, and languages can constitute a drawing. 

Xanthe Muston for “Tell Me Something I Don’t Know 

Muston’s drawings are delicatetechnically accomplished, and sensitively introspective in their subject matter. The downcast gaze of each sitter is a significant visual element along with the confessional text, a facsimile of each sitter’s handwriting. 

Kim Lyle Gallagher for Crystallography of a Recent Day 

Gallagher’s work is technically seamless in creating a visual exchange between the analogue and the digital. The work is humorous in its exploration of personal narratives and the banal nature of daily existence. It was intriguing and engrossing, with a well-developed narrative that keeps the viewer immersed within the work—and by extension—the artist’s world.