John Fries Award

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John Fries Award
Eric Demetriou ‘An Afternoon with Herb Jercher’ (2016)

Fourteen of our most exciting artists feature in this annual round-up of fresh talent

The John Fries Award for emerging visual artists constitutes a handy annual round-up of the most exciting art from Australia and New Zealand, with 14 artists across a range of disciplines making the final cut for exhibition.
 
This year's lineup is dominated by Victorians, with five finalists from that state: Jessie Bullivant, Eric Demetriou, Xanthe Dobbie, Jake Preval, and Debbie Symons.
 
From New South Wales: Uri Auerbach, Tim Gregory, James Nguyen (via New York) and Angela Tiatia. And for the rest, Sam Clague (NZ), Daniel McKewen (Qld), Sarah Poulgrain (Qld), Barbara Moore (NT) and Lilly Morton (NT).
 
The 14 artists were selected by a committee comprised of artist and guest curator Oliver Watts, artists Bianca Hester, Tony Albert and Kath Fries, and curator Mark Feary.
 
The winner of the $10,000 John Fries Prize 2016 is Victorian artist Eric Demetriou, with his sound and installation piece 'An Afternoon with Herb Jercher', made in collaboration with sound artist Herb Jercher.
 
John Fries Award curator Oliver Watts said “Demetriou’s body of work investigates the application of noise, partnered with a mischievous demeanour. This exciting and strong work seems to reference the drover through the sounds and effects of lashing whips. Its duality is what makes it appealing, as the sound of the whip evokes the Man from Snowy River, but it’s mediated through pop culture, art and technical recording devices.”
 
Victorian artist Jessie Bullivant was Highly Commended for her work.
 
The John Fries Award is named in memory of former Viscopy director John Fries.

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