7 Hour Confetti Work takes out ‘the churchie’

Michaela Gleave's winning performance  piece, 'Waiting for Time (7 Hour Confetti Work)'
Michaela Gleave’s winning performance piece, ‘Waiting for Time (7 Hour Confetti Work)’

Australian artist Michaela Gleave has won the annual churchie emerging art prize – one of the country’s most rewarding for emerging artists – now on show at the Griffith University Art Gallery (GUAG).

Her work, entitled ‘Waiting for Time (7 Hour Confetti Work)’ is a live video performance in which she set off one hand-held confetti cannon every minute for the seven-hour duration.

Michaela won the non-acquisitive prize money of $15,000 sponsored by Brand + Slater Architects and says she is overwhelmed to be awarded the honour.

“It really means a lot to me to have this recognition, especially given the high calibre of all the other finalists,” she says.

“I have a couple of international projects planned for next year so it will be really wonderful to have this additional support for my practice.”

A creative snapshot of contemporary practice

According to the judge, Rachel Kent, Chief Curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney, the churchie is a great snapshot of what’s going on creatively today around the country.

“This particular award focuses on artists in the early stages of their career; to be selected for the award and exhibited at the Griffith University Art Gallery is itself an achievement, and a great position to be in for an artist at this career point,” she says.

“What I like about Michaela’s work is the dual position of the artist as a human clock and captive to time quite literally, over the seven-hour period.

“There is also a tension between the idea of confetti as a ‘celebratory’ medium, and the live performance itself, which is one of endurance and a fair degree of suffering.”

Michaela’s work has been exhibited extensively across Australia as well as in Germany, Austria, Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Iceland, the United States and Mexico.

Two Commendation Prizes of $1,000 were also awarded to Queensland College of Art graduate Sha Sarwari and Melbourne-based visual artist Tai Snaith at the official opening and awards presentation on Friday 31 July.

This marks the final year that ‘the churchie’ will be exhibited in GUAG, with the 2016 prize to be moved to QUT.

Griffith Artworks Director Angela Goddard says the Gallery has tremendously enjoyed working with Churchie over the past six years.

“We are proud of the way Griffith Artworks has helped guide ‘the churchie’ to grow from strength to strength,” she says.

“We wish Churchie all the best in their new partnership with our friends at QUT and look forward to seeing more great works by emerging Australian artists in the 2016 prize.”

the churchie emerging art prize
Griffith University Art Gallery
1 – 31 August, 2015
226 Grey Street, South Bank
Open 11am – 4pm, Tuesday to Saturday

2015 Finalists:

Abdul-Rahman Abdullah (WA); Alrey Batol (QLD); Amina McConvell (NT); Anastasia Booth (QLD); Anne Harris (QLD); Benjamin Crowley (QLD); Bobby Kyriakopoulos (VIC); Chris Bennie (QLD); Claudia Greathead (QLD); Dana Lawrie (QLD); Daniel McKewen (QLD); Deb Mansfield (NSW); Genevieve Felix Reynolds (NSW); Harley Ives (NSW); James Barth (QLD); Joshua Bonson (NT); Justine Varga (NSW); Llewellyn Millhouse (QLD); Lydia Wegner (VIC); Margaret Loy Pula (QLD); Martin George (VIC); Matthew Allen (NSW); Matthew Sneesby (QLD); Michaela Gleave (NSW); Patrick Cremin (NSW); Rachael Archibald (QLD); Robert Andrew (QLD); Sam Martin (VIC); Scott Morrison (VIC); Sha Sarwari (QLD); Tai Snaith (VIC); Tim Woodward (VIC); and Yannick Blattner (QLD).

Public Programs:

Hear from ‘the churchie’ artists in lively discussions about their work, art and ideas.

Meet the artists: Session 1
Saturday 1 August 2015, 11.30 am
Led by Naomi Evans, Curator, GUAG

Meet the artists: Session 2
Saturday 15 August, 11.30 am
Led by Jacqueline Armitstead, Assistant Curator, GUAG

School and group bookings
Griffith University Art Gallery welcomes visits from schools, universities and community groups. Please contact the Gallery to make a booking.

MEDIA CONTACT: Lauren Marino, 0418 799 544, l.marino@griffith.edu.au