GRAFFITI might be considered a blight for many in the community, but it has just won a WA artist $16,000.
Sam Bloor’s relief print In Unison, which he carefully extracted from a wall covered in graffiti, took out the first prize in this year’s Fremantle Arts Centre Print Award.
Bloor said he removed the piece of wall, which was popular among local graffiti artists, using a specially made chisel, unearthing more than 10 years worth of aerosol paint held together with council paint.
Judges Consuelo Cavaniglia, Darren Jorgensen and Hannah Mathews said the work pushed the understanding of what printmaking was in the 21st century.
“While the concept of printmaking came about through the invention of the printing press in Europe, leaving one’s mark has long been a means by which life records its passage through the material world,” they said.
“Through In Unison we can begin to rethink the history of printmaking in Australia.
“The first prints may well have been animal tracks, impressions of mega fauna left before the arrival of the First Australians who printed their handprints on rock walls.”
Victorians Elvis Richardson and Virginia Fraser won second prize for their trio of magazine covers dubbed FEMMO™.
An exhibition of the finalists will be on display at the Fremantle Arts Centre until November 12.