Lowenstein Arts Management Prize winners for 2020

Written by: Evan Lowenstein

Announcing Lowensteins Arts Management Prize winners for 2020

We are delighted to announce the winners of the scholarship awards to Australian 2020 final year visual art students. Lowensteins’ program was rolled out in 2017 and has resulted in the recognition of our commitment to the future of arts and the cultural environment. As this edition goes to press, we are pleased to announce the winners.


Sarah Murphy – Joint winner

Sarah is a MFA 2020 graduate who has stated that: “My practice works at unbinding systems of social class, gender and ability through soft sculpture. As a female maker, I integrate craft and labour-intensive techniques to promote self-agency and ownership in a creative practice. (RMIT Year Book 2020, courtesy RMIT)

Avs 20km/h, 2020
Glitter screenprint, velvet, particleboard, metal chain, cogs, bike pedal, reclaimed wood, sponge and padding
760mm x 870mm x 300mm
With permission Sarah Murphy

Andrea Meacham- Joint winner

Andrea is also a MFA 2020 graduate
“Through immersive installations of sculpture, video, sound, textile and live performance, I explore anxieties relating to happiness, shame and failure. Wielding humour and weirdness for their capacity to unsettle, I create and sustain experiences of discomfort and unease, leaning into emotional paradoxes. The comically pathetic, awkward and silly.” (RMIT Year Book 2020, courtesy RMIT)

Look How They Shine (detail), 2020 Cotton, chiffon, organza, polyester, velvet, tulle, beads, sequins, thread, wool, dried flowers, polymer clay, copper tube, gold chain 2190mm x 1500mm With permission Andrea Meacham

University of Melbourne – VCA

Kirsten Browning

“Mishmashing analogue and digital methods, my work explores the psychological and physical effects of displacement, destruction and oppressive power structures on the individual and the land”, from an extract of her letter to Lowensteins.
Kirsten intends to use the funds to pay for studio rental and access to printmaking and photo lab facilities.
In her own words:
“This award has allowed me to maintain the rent of my studio in Brisbane, giving me a space to continue my practice. In this space I have been working on a new, large textile work as well as drawing commissions. I have also used the award to buy new printmaking materials and two more projectors so I am able to extend my practice into printmaking and produce more complex, interdisciplinary works. It really is wonderful to receive a donation to keep the wheels turning in a rather uncertain world!’”

Monash University

Ben Bannan

Ben is a video artist who has won the Monash University award
This animated video restages Giotto Di Bondone’s work ‘Saint Francis of Assisi Receiving the Stigmata’ (1295-1300) by pulverising elements of the painting and placing them back into a fictional scene. The work negotiates a separation, spiralling around the figures of Christ and Saint Francis whose bodies have been made absent from the landscape, while the viewer is situated as an active participant in the transmission of stigmata that persists. Abstracted from its original context, the figureless ground of the image patiently reveals itself, aiming to question various social and bodily relations, projections and transmissions.
Benjamin Bannan, Untitled Saint Francis of Assisi Receiving the Stigmata, 2020, single channel video, 10:32.

Congratulations to all winners of the annual Lowensteins Arts Management Prize of $2,000 each.
I was lucky enough to attend graduation via zoom for RMIT and It was very heartening to see so many corporations, institutions and individual benefactors that came forward to support these students. I made mention in some of my comments to these zoomers that in such a difficult year it is so heartening to see no shortage of creativity.