R & M McGivern Prize delves deep into the Anthropocene

mcgivern anthropocene
mcgivern anthropocene
Inviting a conversation about the environment, colonisation, sustainability, industrialisation, geology and ecology, Maroondah City Council is excited to present the 2019 R & M McGivern Prize. Shortlisted works are set to exhibit across two venues in the Ringwood arts precinct, ArtSpace at Realm and Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery this 23 November 2019 to 1 February 2020.
The exhibition will share conceptual, abstract and literal interpretations from 45 finalists.

“The focus of the R & M McGivern Prize theme this year is ‘Anthropocene’, which translates literally as ‘Anthro’ – meaning human and ‘cene’ – era. This much debated and hotly contested epoch, has encouraged artists to consider what human-generated environmental change looks like”, said Maroondah City Council’s Curator of Exhibitions and Collection, Emily Jones.

Sophia Hewson, Untitled (cheers), (2019)
Kate Shaw, The Grandmother, (2018) Acrylic
The most outstanding and winning artwork will be chosen from the pre-selected finalists by this year’s expert panel of judges including Charlotte Day, Director of Monash University Museum of Art, Ryan Johnston, Director of Buxton Contemporary, and Penny Teale, Bunjil Place Gallery Curator.

“Submissions to the R & M McGivern Prize this year were of outstanding quality, and we received a record number of 450 entries. We could have easily put on a fabulous exhibition from entries which did not make it to the finalist exhibition”, said Mayor of Maroondah, Councillor Rob Steane.


Promoting artistic excellence in painting, the R & M McGivern Prize is a prestigious $25,000 national acquisitive award along with a $1,000 non-acquisitive People’s Choice Prize, and is a valuable opportunity for Maroondah City Council to build upon their distinguished art collection and to strengthen the growing reputation of contemporary arts in Maroondah.

The R & M McGivern Prize was established by the will of the late artist, writer and resident Muriel McGivern, and is a legacy of Muriel’s support of the arts in Maroondah. Awarded by the Perpetual Trustee Company every three years, the prize is always in the medium of painting, in accordance of the bequest, and must be on a different theme each competition.

To complement the theme of ‘Anthropocene’, an engaging art trail has been created to encourage visitors to walk the 10 minutes between the exhibition spaces and explore a series of artistically curated signal boxes. For those who would prefer, there are also guided walking tours or a courtesy bus tour between the spaces.

The 2019 R & M McGivern finalists

Nicholas Aplin, Kate Beynon, Amber Boardman, Angela Brennan, Janet Burchill, Dord Burrough, Penelope Cain, Hamish Carr, Kevin Chin, Nadine Christensen, Dale Cox, Nicola Dickson, Fernando do Campo, Briell Ellison, Josh Foley, Juan Ford, Betra Fraval, Deanne Gilson, Helga Groves, Stephen Haley, Katherine Hattam, Euan Heng, Sophia Hewson, Miles Howard-Wilks, Deborah Klein, Kate Kurucz, Emma Lindsay, Tony Lloyd, Dane Lovett, Simon MacEwan, Jordan Marani, Sam Martin, Andrew Mezei, Luke Pither, Kenny Pittock, Victoria Reichelt, Mark Rodda, Evangelos Sakaris, Kate Shaw, Shannon Smiley, Julian Aubrey Smith, Jacqui Stockdale, Camilla Tadich, Jelena Telecki and Sarah Tomasetti.

Exhibition opening hours

ArtSpace at Realm
Ringwood Town Square,
179 Maroondah Highway,

Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 5pm
Closed Christmas Day to New Year’s Day

Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery
32 Greenwood Avenue,

Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
Saturday, 12noon to 5pm
Closed Christmas Day to New Year’s Day

Supporting activities and workshops

McGivern Art Bus Tour and Afternoon Tea
Saturday 30 November
11am to 12 noon
Meet at Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery Free

Artwalk: McGivern Prize and Signal Boxes
Friday 6 December
11am to 12 noon
Meet at Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery. Free

Art and Ecology Kid’s Workshop
Sat 7 December 2pm to 3.30pm
Meet at Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery Ages 7+
$5, materials provided

Traditional Knowledge and Planetary Health – Indigenous Perspectives on the “Anthropocene”
Saturday 14 December
2pm to 3pm
Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery


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