Macinta Wins 2022 Trevor Nickolls Art Prize

Macinta Fowler & Ms. Wanda Jarvis

We are delighted to report that Year 11 PLHS student Macinta Fowler has won the 2022 Trevor Nickolls Art Prize at this year’s OUR YOUNG MOB exhibition.

Held annually at the Adelaide Festival Centre, OUR YOUNG MOB provides young South Australian Aboriginal artists the opportunity to showcase their art and culture at one of SA’s premier arts facilities – it is staged in the spirit of reconciliation to demonstrate the power of art in bringing together diverse peoples in harmony with a common goal.

Macinta’s winning entry was an artwork entitled “Earth’s Crust” – her practitioner’s statement about this piece can be found below. As well as the prestigious award, Macinta also won $300 of art materials. Not surprisingly, Macinta’s painting sold during the exhibition, as did the artworks of Year 9 PLHS students Lucas Retallick and Robert Roderick Varcoe.

When asked about how she felt about winning the Trevor Nickolls Art Prize, Macinta said she was “surprised and happy because there are so many talented artists in the exhibition”. As for her art supplies, Macinta said: “I want to keep painting, so I’ll get some brushes, canvas and paint”. She went on to say: “It is important to tell stories. I don’t know how to do it in many other ways; art is a way of expressing myself and my culture”.

Congratulations to Macinta, her family and PLHS Art staff Ms. Wanda Jarvis and Jenny Silver on this incredible achievement.

“Earth’s Crust” (acrylic on canvas)

Macinta is an emerging artist born in 2005 in Whyalla, South Australia, where she spent most of her childhood. Macinta currently lives in Port Lincoln and this is a special place because of the connection from her father’s side. The surrounding areas are Kokatha, Mirning and Wirangu country.

Her work as a student in the Port Lincoln Art Centre Enterprise is primarily acrylic painting and relief printing. Macinta uses contemporary techniques and the style of her work is usually semi-abstract with stylised features and strong colour.

The artistic themes and subject matter often reflect the natural environment. Macinta has a strong personal connection to her work and this is evident in the meticulous quality of her resolved works.

Whilst on a girls’ art camp to Dutton Bay, I spent time with Sandra Saunders (an artist who lives and works at Lake Wangary) and Scott Cane (an archaeologist and anthropologist) who inspired my choice of subject matter.

We talked about the Seven Sisters songline and its connection to Mount Greenly, Marble Range and the coastline of the Lower Eyre Peninsula. When we arrived back to camp at the Woolshed, I created a small landscape painting of Mount Dutton. This idea extended into the larger more resolved painting including the significant land features of the surrounding area.

There were seven girls attending the camp and I thought about that connection with the Seven Sisters songline, so I decided to create repeating motifs representing Marble Range, Mount Greenly, Mount Dutton and Mount Drummond.

The blended brushstrokes of the background symbolise the beautiful sunset colours that reflect in lakes of the area (Wangary, Greenly, Hamilton and many salt lakes).

~ Macinta Fowler (Year 11 Art student)

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