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Jacob Leary Wins the John Fries Award 2012

Copyright Agency | Viscopy is pleased to announce Tasmanian artist Jacob Leary has won the John Fries Award 2012 for emerging visual artists. Jacob Leary received the $10,000 prize at the opening of the exhibition of the twenty finalists last night at Gaffa Galleries in Sydney. The prize was awarded by benefactor Vivienne Fries.

The judges also highly commended Cigdem Aydemir’s video installation, Extremist Activity (swing) and commended Kate Shaw’s painting, Milkwater.

The finalists and Leary’s winning entry was selected by a panel of judges including Wayne Tunnicliffe, Head Curator of Australian Art at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Bronwyn Bancroft, artist, illustrator and Copyright Agency board member and Kath Fries, artist and Viscopy board member.

Jacob Leary’s winning artwork, Technological Causality is currently on exhibition with the other finalists: Cyrus Tang, Owen Leong, Nathan Taylor, Georgina Cue, Marc Standing, Fiona Jack, Carolyn V Watson, Paul Yore, Kittey Malarvie, Jacqueline Bradley, Philjames, Catherine Hockey, Adrian Spurr, Adam Laerkesen, George Shaw, Wanda Gillespie, Cath Robinson, Kate Shaw and Cigdem Aydemir.

Exhibition curator for the 2012 John Fries Memorial Prize for emerging visual artists, Venita Poblocki said of the winning piece, ‘In what first looks like an explosion of random objects filling a space, Jacob Leary’s installation, Technological Causality, is a careful meditation upon technological processes and how these technical developments create new realities in which we are immersed. Leary demonstrates the fine line between ‘catastrophe’ and ‘progress’ by showing us how fragmented parts come together to create a guiding whole.’

Bronwyn Bancroft, one of the judges of the 2012 John Fries Memorial Prize for emerging visual artists said, ‘This year the judges were unanimous in their decision, however I think it important to mention the highly commendable work of all of this year’s participants. I find it so exciting to see such a high calibre of talent amongst Australia’s emerging artists and think that prizes like this are crucial in supporting them. Jacob Leary has a forensic and fresh perception of the world he lives in. The winning piece is an extraordinary work with a strong sense of playfulness.’

The exhibition, curated by Venita Poblocki and assisted by Brit Katke, is being held at Gaffa Gallery in Sydney and runs until 1 September. The exhibition is open between Monday – Friday, 10am-6pm and Saturday 11am-5pm.