Ricardo mixed tradition and culture with contemporary to take out the $50,000 first prize.
Have a look at the article below for more on the awards.
Traditional materials in new fashion a winner 25th July 2009, 6:00 WST
“Ricardo’s work stood out because of his obvious commitment to culture and how well he used traditional materials in a contemporary fashion,” Art Gallery of WA curator of indigenous art and selection panel member Clotilde Bullen said.
Idagi, who grew up on Murray Island and was introduced to art, music and culture at a young age, said the $50,000 award, now in its second year, encouraged indigenous people to take up art as a profession.
“Winning such a prestigious prize sets you on a path to independence,” he said. “A lot of young people still see art and music as leisure activities. An award like this shows them you can make a living from doing art for art’s sake.”
Arts Minister John Day also named Wakartu Cory Surprise, from Fitzroy, Crossing as winner of the $10,000 WA Artist Award for impressive paintings dominated by bold violets and yellows.
Lorraine Connelly-Northey, from Victoria, and Nyoongar artist Christopher Pease were highly commended for the major prize and WA artist prize respectively.
“We really wanted the artists to know that this year it was incredibly difficult to make a selection,” Ms Bullen said. “The work was so diverse, from photography and sculpture to installation and acrylic and oil paintings. And it was some of the highest quality work I’ve ever seen anywhere.”
Mr Day said that after next year, the awards would be made biennial.
The 103 works by the finalists will be on display at the Art Gallery until November.