Founded in 1998, past winners include Robert Hannaford (1998), Elisabeth Cummings (2000), Joe Furlonger (2002), Ian Grant (2004), Ken Whisson (2006), Tim Burns (2008), Julie Harris (2011), Fiona Lowry (2013), Tony Albert (2016) and James Tylor and Laura Wills (2018).
The Fleurieu Art Prize was ambitious from the outset. With a goal to raise the profile of the Fleurieu Peninsula the founders convinced local wineries and businesses to support a Prize for landscape, supported by associated prizes.
The main landscape prize gained prestige and was for some time the richest landscape prize in Australia.
Over the years, the Fleurieu Art Prize has taken a variety of forms and has seen a few name changes, including the Fleurieu Biennale.
In 2016, Fleurieu Art Prize was shown at the Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art in Adelaide and the Fleurieu Food + Wine Art Prize was revived as a community run exhibition in McLaren Vale.
The Fleurieu Biennale Art Prize will be exhibited at the Fleurieu Arthouse in the heart of McLaren Vale from 7 June - 14 July 2024. Artists are invited to submit artworks (2D or 3D) exploring the theme A Sense of Place. There are three prizes: The Fleurieu Art Prize $20,000, Emerging Artists Prize $5,000, and a People’s Choice award of $2,000.
The 2020 and 2022 Fleurieu Biennales were cancelled due to the Covid pandemic.
The Fleurieu Biennale returned to its home on the Fleurieu Peninsula in 2018.
James and Laura have been collaborating on new works that merge their own experiences of Australian colonial history and investigate the idea of mapping, conflict and colonialism. Hidden Landscapes: Kangaroo Island is their latest work. It explores the history of Kangaroo Island, particularly the early sealers and Aboriginal Tasmanian women who lived there before white settlement. This collaborative project between an Indigenous and a non-Indigenous artist helps find a way to decolonise the telling of stories about Australian frontier history in mainstream society. James said “winning the prize is great validation….something like the wars between British and Aboriginal people has really not been something that has been discussed all that much, and to be able to make a work that highlights that history and to have a nationally significant prize acknowledge that work is really amazing. It is nice to know we can talk about those harsh histories and it be acknowledged by the community.”
The 2016 FFW+AP was a successful community event exhibited across a number of wineries in the Mclaren Vale region.
In Tabletop 1, Fran explores the experiences of new-motherhood, domesticity and the struggle to find the ultimate art/mother balance. In making the work an un-stretched canvas was draped tablecloth-like on the kitchen table and objects were sketched as they landed on the table during daily routines of family life such as cooking, eating, filling milk bottles and packing lunches. Wine, coffee, tea, and salt all become part of the media.
Fran has been busy since the FFW+AP win. Check out her latest work.