City of Karratha

Judges announced for 2018 Cossack Art Awards

22 Jun 2018

Three respected artists from across the country will make up the judging panel for the prestigious Cossack Art Awards taking place in the City of Karratha next month.

City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said he was very pleased with the choice of judges for the 2018 awards, noting they were each talented and capable individuals who fit well with the continued growth and development of the Award itself and the impressive quality of artwork submitted for exhibition each year.

“I am extremely pleased to announce the three judges we have secured for the 2018 Cossack Art Awards are Regina Pilawuk Wilson, Dr Emma Lindsay and Dr Jonathan McBurnie; I am looking forward to seeing what they bring to the exhibition and the public program,” Cr Long said.

“The Cossack Art Award has been central to the growth of arts and culture in the City of Karratha and each year the works we are able to hang on the walls of the Cossack buildings just gets better and better,” he said.

The Cossack Art Awards is presented by the City of Karratha with principal partner Rio Tinto.

Rio Tinto General Manager Ports Dampier Jess Farrell said the Cossack Art Awards attracted a high calibre of artists and she was looking forward to once again being part of such an important Arts and Culture initiative.

“As Principal Partner, Rio Tinto is committed to enhancing the Arts and Culture in the Pilbara, through initiatives such as the Cossack Art Awards,” Ms Farrell said. 

“The awards provide an opportunity for artists to display their talents at a nationally recognised event. The calibre of Judges this year match the quality and excellence of the display,” she added.

Ten categories will be awarded at the Cossack Art Awards Gala Night on 21 July, with the Horizon Power People’s Choice awarded at the end of the exhibition.

The 2018 Cossack Art Awards opens to the public on Sunday 22 July in conjunction with Cossack Family Day, and runs until Sunday 12 August, 2018.

For more information on the Cossack Art Awards visit and to stay up to date with the latest Cossack Art Awards news follow the event on Facebook:



Notes to the Editor:

Regina Pilawuk Wilson

Regina Pilawuk Wilson is a Ngan’gikurrungurr woman, born in the Daly River region of the Northern Territory. Together with her husband, Harold Wilson, Regina founded the Peppimenar (meaning ‘large rock’) Community as a permanent settlement for the Ngan’gikurrungurr people in the Daly River region, south west of Darwin in 1973. The location of the community is an important dreaming site for the Ngan’gikurrungurr language group and is situated amid wetlands and floodplains at the centre of the Daly River Aboriginal Reserve, 300 kilometres south-west of Darwin.

The subject matter of Regina’s works is based around the practice of weaving fibre art – skills she inherited from her grandmother and mother. After attending the Contemporary Art Biennale (Pacific Arts Festival) in 2000, Regina decided to try acrylic painting. Regina experimented with various techniques and designs during workshops held by the Darwin gallerist Karen Brown. During this time, she started to transfer her weaving designs and patterns into canvas, including syaw (fish-net), wupun (basket), string bags, wall mats and sun mats.

Regina won the General Painting category of the Telstra National Indigenous and Torres-Strait Islander Award in 2003 for a golden syaw (fish-net) painting. Wilson also celebrates the cultural significance of ‘message sticks’ in her paintings– a traditional form of communication between communities – and transposes their densely textured qualities onto the canvas.

Dr Emma Lindsay

Dr Emma Lindsay is a Visual Artist based in Brisbane, Australia. Lindsay studied painting at the National Art School (Sydney), the College of Fine Arts (UNSW), and graduated from the Queensland College of Art in 2009 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Hons 1) degree. She was awarded her practice-led research PhD (Visualising Extinction: Representing extinct and endangered species archived in global natural history museums) through RMIT Melbourne in 2016.

Her paintings and interdisciplinary projects explore environmental issues relating to long-term anthropogenic activities, and personal encounters with threatened, endangered and extinct species and their habitats during this time of the Anthropocene. Overall winner of the 2016 Moreton Bay Art Awards, she was a finalist in the Churchie National Emerging Art Exhibition (2011), the Redlands Westpac Emerging Art Prize (2012), and the Waterhouse Art Prize (2014). Awarded an Australia Council Artstart Grant (2010), her work became the subject of a Studio TV Artbreak documentary: (2011). She was also awarded residencies at BAER Art Centre Artist Center, Iceland (2011), Hill End Murray’s Cottage Residency (Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, 2011), Point B Worklodge, New York (2014), and Artspace Mackay (2017).

Lindsay’s PhD Extinction Project ‘Extinction flock (29 extinct Australian bird specimens)’ paintings were shown at the Queensland Museum during the 2016 World Science Festival Brisbane, and are now held in the University of Queensland Art Museum Collection. The first phase of Lindsay’s latest studio research project, Great Barrier Reef | Anthropocene Project, was shown at Artspace Mackay from November 2017 to February 2018. Lindsay’s paintings are held in the public collections of the Baer Art Center (Iceland), Moreton Bay Regional Council, University of Queensland Art Museum, World Museum Liverpool, Queensland Museum, and in private collections in Australia, Canada, Iceland, Switzerland, UK, and the USA.

Dr Jonathan McBurnie

Jonathan McBurnie is an artist, writer and cartoonist presently based in Townsville, Australia.

McBurnie began self-publishing comic books at the age ten, and his life has been a series of constant projects ever since. Completing a PhD at Sydney College of the Arts, University of Sydney, in 2015, McBurnie’s thesis and accompanying studio works explored the shifting role of drawing in the digital age, emphasizing the discipline’s ongoing tenacity through tactility, adaptability and eroticism. These works are an argument between established high and low art forms, and question popular culture’s impact upon society, particularly in terms of shaping identity, and the ways such iconographies are used as fodder for artistic vision, as well as a means of self-expression. McBurnie approaches his work as a collision of high and low forms, and seeks the narrative propulsion and dense visual language that lies in the tension between these forms.

McBurnie is presently the Director of Umbrella Studio Contemporary Arts, and also writes on occasion, having been published in Eyeline, Catalogue, The Lifted Brow, Huxley, Penthouse Australia, the Journal of Asia-Pacific Pop Culture and Sneaky, where he was the Visual Arts Editor.