Hornsby Art Prize Winners Announced

Publish date:
A Whispering Flag by Solomon Karmel-Shann

The winners of the Hornsby Art Prize have been announced, with Solomon Karmel-Shann from Canberra taking home the top prize for his depiction of a troubled young man walking away from a red flag that towers in the distance on top of the hill.

His artwork, A Whispering Flag, was described by the judges as evoking “a sense of mystique and an underlying story. The viewer is drawn into a narrative that is both sensitive and deeply emotional”.

A Whispering Flag is a very personal painting, exploring change, difficult decisions, contemplation. It’s a tense moment of indecision. A story that’s just out of reach of a conclusion,” said Solomon.

“Winning the Hornsby Art Prize was a very surreal experience, one that still feels a bit like a dream. I worked really hard on my painting, alone in the studio with my own thoughts and doubts. It’s so encouraging to be given an award like this. Thrilling actually.”

Hosted in partnership with the Hornsby Art Society, the Hornsby Art Prize is an annual, national art competition and exhibition promoting and celebrating outstanding original works of art. This year, the competition had a total prize pool valued at $23,000, with the major prize worth $10,000. The winners were presented their awards by Councillors Sallianne McClelland and Janelle McIntosh at a special ceremony on Saturday evening.

“After two years of lying dormant, it’s wonderful to be able to celebrate local and national talent by once again hosting the Hornsby Art Prize. The talent on display this year is outstanding. Congratulations to all winners,” Hornsby Shire Mayor Philip Ruddock said.

Special effort is made to highlight the work of local artists. The Wallarobba Outstanding Local Award was awarded to Maide Anne Welch from Hornsby for her work Sweet Temptation. The judges said it is a “sweet piece. It elevates the reality of an everyday object to a surreal style”.

Local emerging latent is also recognised through the Hornsby Shire Emerging Artist Award which was won by Amelia Ruggiero from Hornsby for her work Farm: Seated. The judges described it as a “small but engaging work of beautiful making and gestures”.

Solomon Karmel-Shann (centre) with Councillor Janelle McIntosh (left) and Councillor Sallianne McClelland (right).

Other winners include:

Category Winner – Printmaking
Cleo Wilkinson

Category Winner – Drawing
Linda Lunnon

Category Winner – 3D Works
Jody Graham

Category Winner – Digital Skills
Garth Henderson

Category Winner – Painting
Sally West

“Hornsby Art Society is delighted to partner once more with Hornsby Shire Council to present the Hornsby Art Prize, promoting arts and culture to the area. We are so impressed with the wonderful range of works and hope the community enjoys the exhibition,” Hornsby Art Society President, Chris Beard said.

The prize winners, along with the finalists, will be on exhibition at Wallarobba Arts and Cultural Centre and Hornsby Central Library until 30 October. For more information go to

Photos: A Whispering Flag by Solomon Karmel-Shann
Solomon Karmel-Shann (centre) with Councillor Janelle McIntosh (left) and Councillor Sallianne McClelland (right).