Prairiewood High School graduate Shantelle Morrison's artwork selected for ARTEXPRESS

Shantelle Morrison with her artwork.
Shantelle Morrison with her artwork.

The exhibition may be called ARTEXPRESS, but there was nothing fast about Prairiewood High School graduate Shantelle Morrison's HSC artwork.

The 18-year-old used a mixture of glue and acrylic paint to create a multilayered, textured surface for her piece titled Femininity of the Curve.

The technique meant she had to wait for things to dry before she started the next part of the process meaning her artwork often sat idle for days.

In total it took seven months for her to complete including before and after school and school holiday sessions.

But it was worth it. She was one of 48 young artists whose artwork was selected for the 36th ARTEXPRESS exhibition from 8552 student works submitted for the 2019 HSC.

Shantelle Morriso's painting, titled Femininity of the Curve.

Shantelle Morriso's painting, titled Femininity of the Curve.

Prairiewood High School was also awarded the 2020 Sir William Dobell Art Foundation award for excellence in teaching to a visual art faculty in a secondary school in NSW and received a $2000 grant to support the faculty.

Ms Morrision praised her teachers for the help she received for her project which was was inspired by artists Georgia O'Keefe and Lee Krasner; both modernist, feminist, abstract painters working at a time dominated by male practitioners.

"My artwork is an abstract expressionist painting based on the concept of femininity using conventional colours and feminine forms such as rounded curves, circles and organic lines," she said.

"The assembly of overlapping, sensual, curved shapes exemplifies the many facets of womanhood and alludes to the array of complex identities and representations within the realm of 'femaleness'. Ultimately, my painting is a tribute to female strength and empowerment, and a celebration of femininity."

Ms Morrision, who was inspired by her dad to draw and paint, plans on continuing her art while studying real estate.

Art Gallery of NSW director Michael Brand said ARTEXPRESS - a joint partnership between the NSW Education Standards Authority and NSW Department of Education - represents the independent "creative voices of young people" and the issues that are important to them.

"I congratulate all 2019 HSC visual arts students on the tremendous accomplishment of creating a body of artwork for the HSC. The continued popularity of ARTEXPRESS is testament to the public's enthusiasm for supporting young artists and the Gallery's ongoing commitment to providing a platform for artists and a forum for art education and the exchange of ideas," Dr Brand said.

  • The ARTEXPRESS exhibition is on display at the Art Gallery of New South Wales until April 26.