Sulman Prize 2018 children’s labels

Who is your favourite pop star?

This humorous artwork was made by Kaylene Whiskey and it depicts two famous pop stars – Dolly Parton and Cher – hanging out together at Christmas. Cher is the one on the right. Perhaps she is singing along with music coming from the TV. What do you think? Notice their amazing costumes and shoes and the Aboriginal patterns and symbols that decorate the room.

How many plants can you spot?

Did you expect this artwork to be flat when you walked up to it?

Gregory Hodge made this abstract painting by overlapping shapes to create the illusion of three-dimensional objects projecting out of the canvas. The limited colours and clever use of shadows add to the illusion so, at first glance, we expect some of the pieces to be stuck to the canvas rather than painted.

What do the shapes remind you of?

Do you like to use patterns to create shapes and abstract forms?

Natalya Hughes has painted an abstract picture of a woman blending into a background of patterns and shapes. We have to focus our attention to make out her features and outline. The greens and greys contrast with the pinks and reds in the middle, which could represent skin or perhaps a dress. Is she standing or sitting?

Move closer then further away. Which viewpoint gives you the best impression of the woman?

What does your homework desk or work area look?

Kiata Mason has painted her art table, complete with her art materials, some of the objects she is working on in her paintings, everyday household objects and the music she listens to when she paints. The placement of the blue-and-white ceramic pots leads our eyes across the painting and the shape of the green bananas is like the leaves of the orchid, creating harmony and balance within the composition.

What type of painting do you think she is going to paint next?

How many people do you think are in this artwork?

Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran’s artwork was inspired by society’s obsession with looking good and going to the gym. Images of muscular bodies from magazines are collaged across the background. Three self-portraits are painted over the top like a religious triptych (or three-part painting) as a contrast to the worship of body perfection.

What objects can you recognise on the three self-portraits?

Do you like people-watching in your neighbourhood?

Wendy Sharpe walks from Erskineville Station to her art studio every day and the people she sees inspired her to create this colourful painting full of characters. Bright colours in the middle ground contrast with the darker colours of the background so our eyes move around the painting from one person to the next.

Choose one of the characters and invent a story about who they are and what they are doing at the station.

What animals do you love that you would hate to become extinct?

Joan Ross is interested in exploring the theme of loss. Her work looks at how nature and diverse cultures throughout history have been affected by the human hunger for power and the claiming of new lands. Inspired by botanical drawings of the past, this headless bird is a message about our need to care more for the planet and each other before everything is gone.

What do you think this bird’s head looked like?

What household objects do you use to make cubbies or hideaways?

Clare Thackway’s realistic painting was inspired by her daughter’s love of hiding under a large blanket and singing a song about being under the sea. At first glance, we only see the blanket, but upon closer inspection we can make out the shape of her daughter and can see a tiny glimpse of her arm poking out from the stripes.

What song would you sing if you were hidden under this blanket?