A celebration of small sculpture

Exhibition dates: 23 August–13 October 2023

The Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award was established in 2009 and is organised by the Art Collection and Galleries Unit at Deakin University, Victoria. The award celebrates contemporary sculptures from artists around Australia, culminating in an exhibition of finalists' work held in August to October each year at the Deakin University Art Gallery.

A panel, who changes composition each year, shortlist around 40 entries as finalists from an average of 280 entries that are received annually. The same panel then chooses a Winner and a Highly Commended. The winning work goes into the Deakin University Art Collection.

The finalist exhibition is held for a period of 6-8 weeks at the Deakin University Art Gallery on Deakin’s Melbourne Burwood campus. At the end of the exhibition, a People’s Choice winner is determined by vote from exhibition visitors and the winning artist is awarded a non-acquisitive cash prize.

2023 Finalists

Samara Adamson-Pinczewski
Ourania Amvrazis
Anindita Banerjee
Gillian Bencke
Annette Bukovinsky
Melanie Cobham
Amy Cohen
Emma Coulter
Augustine Dall'Ava
Julian Di Martino
Naomi Eller
Carly Fischer
Gail Hastings
Patrick Heath

David Jensz
Linda Judge
Tala Kaalim
Sam Kariotis
Alicia King
Jo Lane
Jenna Lee
Shirley Macnamara
Carolyn Menzies
Dónal Molloy-Drum
Kendal Murray
Lori Pensini
Kirsteen Pieterse
Kenny Pittock

Daniel Press
Nina Sanadze
Louise Skacej
Vipoo Srivilasa
Hiromi Tango
Natalie Quan Yau Tso
Carmel Wallace
Bettina Willner-Browne
Alana Wilson
Ching-Yee Wong
Petr Zly
Simon Zoric

2023 judges

We are pleased to announce this year’s judging panel for the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award.

Lisa Roet

Lisa Roet is a leading Australian artist whose creative research explores the relationships between human beings and primates. Incorporating zoological studies, residencies and remote field observations, Roet’s practice encompasses large-format drawing, sculptural installations, large scale public art biodiversity projects, bronze casting, photography, digital print and video.

Roet has presented over 25 solo exhibitions and participated in more than 50 group exhibitions internationally and within Australia including, Singapore Art Week, Golden Monkey (2022), Art Nature, Royal Botanical Gardens, Edinburgh, Golden Monkey (2020-21) Hong Kong Business of Design Week (2018), Earth Hour, Beijing, Skywalker Gibbon Project (2018), Beijing Design Week, Beijing (2016) and Australian Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide, Heart Beat (2016).

Roet presented the exhibition Monkey Grip at the Deakin University Art Gallery, Melbourne (2013), which toured to various regional galleries throughout Victoria (2013-14). Roet was a recipient of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award (2012) with a work titled Spider Monkey and her monograph Lisa Roet: Uncommon Observations (2004) is published by Thames and Hudson.

Anthony Fitzpatrick

Anthony Fitzpatrick is a curator and writer. Since joining TarraWarra Museum of Art in 2011, he has curated numerous solo and group exhibitions and has written a range of catalogue essays. Recent exhibitions include PETER BOOTH (2022–23), Heather B. Swann: Leda and the Swan (2021–22) and Sidney Nolan: Myth Rider (2021–22). Prior to this, he held public gallery positions at Maroondah Art Gallery and the Cunningham Dax Collection.

Leanne Willis

Leanne Willis is the Senior Manager Art Collection and Galleries at Deakin University and represents the University on the Award selection panel. She has had responsibility for the Deakin University Art Gallery and the University Art Collection since 2007 and established the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award in 2009. Prior to her appointment at Deakin, she was Director of the Shepparton Art Gallery for 10 years (now known as SAM) and before that Director of Grafton Regional Gallery.

Get in touch

If you would like to be added to the Award mailing list, please email smallsculpture@deakin.edu.au.

Supported by Community Bank at Deakin University.

Frequently asked questions

Is the stand included in the measurements?
If the stand is needed to make the artwork free standing, it is included in the measurements and considered to be part of the artwork for the purpose of the size requirement. If the stand is integral to the work and the work must be attached to the stand then the stand is included in the measurements

Is the white display plinth included in the measurements?
No. The only thing included in the measurements is the artwork itself and anything needed to make it free-standing. The white display plinth provided by the gallery is not included in the measurements.

Can the work be wall mounted?
No. All works must be free-standing – in other words, must stand up by themselves. Wall mounted works are not eligible.

Can I enter a drawing of what I think my work will look like?
No. There are strict size and weight restrictions that must be met. To avoid disappointment it's best to just submit the actual work.

Can I enter pictures of my other work?
No. Please only submit the actual entry to avoid confusion. There is a limit of three images per entry. Please make sure the entrant’s name is in the file title.

Can I bring my own display plinth?
Yes. Please do so with the understanding that it will be repainted to match the other plinths in the gallery. Please contact gallery staff prior to delivery to discuss.

Can I submit a late entry?
No.

Can I submit an entry by mail?
No, entry forms must be submitted online. Entry forms sent by email or postal mail will not be accepted.

I cannot submit the entry form online.
Please check you have verified your email address by typing in the verification code emailed to your nominated email address. We do this to ensure everyone has entered a valid email address. You must verify your email before submitting the entry form. The code is generated straight away so please check your junk mail/spam folder if it doesn't arrive in your inbox. It will come from “Snapforms”.

Past winners

2022


Scotty So
Surburbkin in Red, 01
Nylon, metal
34 x 30 x 15cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2022
Image © and courtesy of the artist and MARS Gallery, Melbourne

2021

Michael Le Grand
TRANSIT
Painted steel
12 x 22 x 13cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2021 Image © and courtesy of the artist and Australian Galleries, Melbourne and Sydney
Photo by Polo Jimenez

2020

The Award was not held in this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2019

Kate Ellis
Untitled, Poodle Paw
Beeswax, damar resin, silk thread, acrylic fur, poodle fur
47 x 13.5 x 17cm

Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2019 Image © and courtesy of the artist

2018

Hannah Toohey
Archaea No. 4

Fabric, stuffing, porcelain, raccoon claws
37 x 23 x 18cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2018
Image © and courtesy of the artist
Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2017


Richard Stringer

House on Fire
Cultured marble, felt & Perspex
64 x 56 x 56cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2017 Image © and courtesy of the artist
Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2016

Geoffrey Bartlett
Fusion revisited
Bronze and Jarrah (Eucalyptus marginata)
70 x 27.8 x 27cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2016 Image © and courtesy of the artist and Australian Galleries, Melbourne and Sydney
Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2015

Kendal Murray
Provision, Revision, Decision, Division

Mixed media assemblage: timber, porcelain, metal, plastic, paint, resin and pebbles
30.8 x 18 x 18cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2015 Image © and courtesy of the artist and Arthouse Gallery, Sydney
Photo by Ian Hobbs

2014

Mikala Dwyer
Empty Sculpture
Plastic, air
68 x 40 x 30cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2014 Image © and courtesy of the artist and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney
Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2013

Michael Sibel
Primitive Dance
Bronze
55 x 29.3 x 21.8cm (in two parts)
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2013 Image © and courtesy of the artist
Photo by Mark Soutter

2012

Lisa Roet
Spider Monkey
Bronze
45 x 60 x 20cm
Winner of the Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2012
Image © and courtesy of the artist and Hugo Michell Gallery, Adelaide; Gow Langsford Gallery, Auckland; and Pieces of Eight Gallery, Melbourne Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2011

Stephen Bird
Boxers
clay, pigment, glaze
70 x 38 x 28cm
Winner of Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2011 Image © and courtesy of the artist and Olsen Gallery, Sydney; and The Scottish Gallery, Edinburgh
Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2010

Robert Hague
Trojan Hammer (200%)
bronze, 24 ct gold powder
39.5 x 13.5 x 13.5cm
Winner of Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2010 Image © and courtesy of the artist
Photo by Simon Peter Fox

2009

Stephen Benwell
Statue, Grey-Pink Man
clay, engobe, glaze stains

23.5 x 9.5 x 9.5cm
Winner of the inaugural Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award, 2009
Image © and courtesy of the artist and Niagara Galleries, Melbourne Photo by Simon Peter Fox