Still 2021 Opens: A Reflection of our Times

2 years ago | by

Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery throws open the physical and virtual doors to its signature art prize, Still: National Still Life Award 2021, on Saturday 14 August.

For the first time, the ultimate winner of the $30,000 art prize will be announced in a virtual opening ceremony, broadcast live from the Gallery.

With many parts of Australia under travel restrictions, the livestream allows all 59 finalists vying for the prize to still be part of the excitement of opening night. In another first, the general public is also invited to the opening online from wherever they are in the world.

Making the announcement live from Sydney online is guest judge and Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Elizabeth Ann Macgregor OBE.

Attracting works from every state and territory, the third Still: National Still Life Award is the biggest and most diverse ever with 59 finalists selected from a record field of over 1,000 entries.

The Coffs Coast proudly boasts seven of the finalists:- Coffs Harbour’s Samuel Beattie and Peggy Zephyr, Sawtell’s Violetta Lanza, Valla’s Christine Wilson, Sapphire Beach’s John Van Der Kolk, and Bellingen’s Polly Wells and Nikky Morgan-Smith.

 According to Gallery Curator, Chloe Waters, the biennial award is a reflection of the last two years, and the 2021 works will challenge our thinking on themes from First Nations experiences to addressing climate concerns.

“There has been no shortage of extreme events that have driven people indoors, prompting reflection and uncovering truths in time to be captured in this year’s award,” Waters said.

Another virtual innovation for Still 2021 is a new 3D tour of the exhibition launching by September, opening the artists’ works to the world and anyone unable to visit in person. This also delivers a wider audience for the artists to sell their work at a time the creative industries need support.

Still: National Still Life Award 2021 exhibition opens 14 August to 23 October at Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery as part of its 20th anniversary celebrations. Visitors can also cast their vote for their favourite still life at the Gallery or online in the $5,000 People’s Choice Award.

Still 2021 is supported by major sponsors Bryant McKinnon Lawyers and saso.creative, with supporting sponsors Moving Art, Andrew Peace Wines, Harbour Magazine and Friends of Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery.

Watch the opening event and the winner announcement livestreamed from the Gallery’s Facebook page from 6pm on Saturday 14 August. More details at:


Pictured above:

Steve Bush Memento Mori 2020 | Digital print on aluminium, timber, acrylic, wax

Regi Cherini Pandemic 2020 | Embroidery floss on calico

Curator Chloe Waters with: Yannick Blattner Force a smile for summer 2021 | Oil on board

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