Three First Nations artists are among the impressive list of Australia Council Award recipients, including Rhoda Roberts who will receive the prestigious Ros Bower Award, along with Rachael Maza (theatre) and Vicki Van Hout (dance).
Helen Garner receives the award for Lifetime Achievement in Literature. She is joined by Susan Norrie (visual arts), Joyce Hinterding (emerging and experimental art) and composer David Bridie, who receives the Australia Council’s Don Banks Music Award.
Fablice Manirakiza is the recipient of this year’s Kirk Robson Award. A former child soldier from war-torn Burundi, Fablice draws from his hip hop/rap practice to create interactive workshops for young people from marginalised communities in Victoria. The award recognises a young person working in community arts and cultural development.
Australia Council CEO Adrian Collette AM said the awards offered an opportunity to reflect on the significant contribution of Australian artists and to highlight the inherent value of culture and its contribution to society. “It is wonderful to be able to honour these eight outstanding artists who, each in their own way, reflects Australia’s rich creative talent,” he said.
“These artists have been nominated by their peers for the extraordinary contribution they have made both in their fields, and to the broader cultural life of the nation.”
For more information, visit: www.australiacouncil.gov.au for details.
Image: (Top l – r) David Bridie, Fablice Manirakiza, Helen Garner and Joyce Hinterding (Botton l – r) Rachael Maza, Rhoda Roberts, Susan Norrie and Vicki Van Hout (supplied)
The recipients of 2019 Australia Council Awards are:
David Bridie – Australia Council Don Banks Music Award
Seven time ARIA award winning songwriter and composer David Bridie has enjoyed a distinguished career as one of Australia’s most innovative musicians. His repertoire ranges from recording artist to soundtrack composer, producer, lyricist, songwriter and singer, as well as specialist in the music of Melanesia, Bridie has certainly stamped his mark. A founding member and songwriter of critically acclaimed musical groups Not Drowning Waving and My Friend The Chocolate Cake, Bridie has balanced his career as a live musician with the composition of soundtrack music – with credits for over 16 Feature films.
Fablice Manirakiza – Kirk Robson Award
Fablice Manirakiza is a young leader from Burundi who has made an incredible impact on the local Burundian community in Victoria, the broader Australian arts sector, and his home country. Fablice has already traversed a remarkable journey, beginning with his escape from the military as a child soldier in war-torn Burundi, surviving refugee camps in Tanzania (Lukole), to his arrival in Australia in 2007. Since arriving in Australia, Fablice has established himself as an artist of influence in Melbourne’s cultural landscape, working as a community cultural development worker to create connections between CALD youth and communities across Victoria.
Helen Garner – Australia Council Award for Lifetime Achievement in Literature
Helen Garner is one of Australia’s most cherished writers. She is known and admired for her fearless honesty in both her fiction and non-fiction. In 2006 she received the inaugural Melbourne Prize for Literature, and in 2016 she won the prestigious Windham–Campbell Prize for non-fiction. Her novels include Monkey Grip, The Children’s Bach, Cosmo Cosmolino and The Spare Room. Garner is much loved by Australian readers, writers and festival audiences. Her work, spanning more than four decades, has helped Australia define its identity and has created a genre all of its own.
Joyce Hinterding – Australia Council Emerging & Experimental Arts Award
Joyce Hinterding’s work explores physical and virtual dynamics. Her practice is based on investigations into energetic forces, through custom built field recording and monitoring technologies. These explorations into acoustic and electromagnetic phenomena have produced large sculptural antenna works, experimental drawings, video and sound-producing installations and experimental audio works for performance. She often collaborates with artist David Haines to produce large scale works that explore the tension between the fictive and the phenomenal. Joyce currently lives in The Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia, her audio work has been released by antiopic and she lectures part-time at Sydney College of the Arts, the University of Sydney.
Rachael Maza – Australia Council Award for Theatre
Rachael Maza is a Yidinji and Meriam woman and the current Artistic Director for ILBIJERRI Theatre Company (2008 – present). Both born into a movement and carving her own legacy, Rachael stands strong for First Nations theatre making as a powerful tool for social justice and brings a wealth of acting, directing, dramaturgical experience and profile to black theatre in Australia. During her time as Artistic Director she has furthered lbijerri’s vision of creating Indigenous theatre that is both universal and uniquely Indigenous in its themes, resonating with local, national and international audiences.
Rhoda Roberts – Ros Bower Award
A member of the Bundjalung nation, Widjabul and Gidabul clans of Northern NSW and South East QLD, Rhoda Roberts was the founder and Artistic Director of the annual International Festival The Dreaming based at Woodford, QLD. She was also a co-founding member of Australia’s first national Aboriginal theatre company, the Aboriginal National Theatre Trust (ANTT) and coined the term Welcome to Country, establishing protocol manuals and welcomes by local custodians for the arts industry. She has been involved with a number of large events in varying roles including Sydney Dreaming Festival, Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, Rugby World Cup 2003 and Songlines – Vivid Festival Sydney 2016.
Susan Norrie – Australia Council Visual Arts Award
Susan Norrie was born 1953 and lives and works in Sydney. While initially known for her painting and installation, she has become increasingly renowned within Australia and internationally for her work in film, although her engagement with both painting and the moving image continues to influence each and intersect across her practice. Susan Norrie represented Australia at the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007. In 2016 she was commissioned by the Australian War Memorial Museum, Canberra to create a major video/film project which will be completed in 2019.
Vicki Van Hout – Australia Council Award for Dance
Vicki Van Hout is an Indigenous independent artist with over 20 years’ experience. A graduate of NAISDA Dance College and the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance in New York, she went on to perform with major Indigenous dance companies, Bangarra Dance Theatre and the Aboriginal Islander Dance Theatre, before joining forces with Marilyn Miller as a founding member of Fresh Dancers. With Marilyn, Vicki performed Dear Carrie for One extra Dance and Quinkin for the Adelaide Fringe Festival.