On Day Four of our Epic Archibull Judging Tour of 2013 found us on the beautiful central coast .
Still predominately following our time schedule, (much to everyone’s surprise -especially us!) and having a great time seeing all these wonderful Archibull cows and meeting the very clever students and teachers who have put their heart and souls into their 2013 Archibull Prize entries over the last 6 months.
School Fifteen was Northlakes High School
A Starry Starry night, Cornfields (turned into fields of cotton!), a palette of blue and green, and a bandaged head where his left ear used to be. (It is now in a box at his feet, waiting to be sent to his beloved, Rachel.
He has emerged out of the picture frame at his feet and can only be “Homage to Rachel” and to Vincent van Gogh.
This Archibull is expressive and beautifully painted. It tells a wonderful story about Vincent van Gogh as well as the cotton industry. Growing fields of cotton are shown, as well as the end product (the cotton doilies and cotton bandage). The importance of water to the cotton industry is expressed by the watering can, hovering over the entire scene.
This “Homage to Rachel” also has a subtle “Where’s Wally” theme going through the use of the Cotton Australia logo. How many can you find?
School Sixteen was Tuggerah Lakes Secondary College Berkeley Vale Campus
“Casey Cotton Boll” is very unique (a little bit of an understatement!)
She shows three distinct facets of the cotton industry –the planting and harvest of cotton, the manufacture of cotton thread and the transformation of cotton thread into clothing. Each of these facets is shown on a different side of the cow.
That’s right! Three sides to this cow!
No, she is not triangular, but has been split in half lengthwise. This has allowed the school to show each story separately.
One side, through the stylistic influence of Brett Whitely, covers the growth cycle of cotton from seed to harvest. It also shows some of the technology used, the integrated pest management and the importance of water.
Her other side tells of the cotton which is exported to be ginned, processed and made into clothing in India and other countries. This has been shown through the delicate motifs of textile patterns and prints of India and Bangladesh, as well as imagery of the Sacred Cow.
The inside of Casey is stylistically very different again. She stands on a suitcase, which represents the export of raw cotton overseas, and shows the final product as we commonly see it –clothes. It also links to their Young Farming Champion – Richie Quigley.
School Seventeen was Turramurra High School
“Mootilda Purl” does not moo. She bleats like a sheep!
She is, after all, a cow in sheep’s clothing! Her woolly coat is 100% Australian made and will keep her as warm as toast all through winter.
It showcases the flags of the three main countries that Australia exports wool to –China, India and Italy. She talks about the fact that while Australia exports most of its wool, we also import finished wool products back into Australia.
She has gorgeous, grassy green knitted legs with bright coloured flowers, seemingly picked up while she was frolicking in a paddock.
Her cowbell motion sensor hangs around her neck, surprising anyone who gets too close.
She is quirky and fun and constantly surprises you as she bleats at you. You look around for a sheep, but don’t find a sheep, just a cow in sheep’s clothing!
School Eighteen was James Ruse Agricultural High School
James Ruse is the holder of the 2012 Archibull Prize and it was delightful to see the trophy taking pride of place in their trophy cabinet as we walked through the door
“Woven” weaves together the story of the wool industry in Australia. She shows the connections between all of the parts to create a cohesive whole.
She shows the wool industry through its
-history (through the imagery on a film reel),
-connection to Australia (through the colouring and the quirky take on aboriginal motifs),
– people (through a collage of some of the occupations and faces involved),
-technology (through the cog motifs)
-farming (from farm to consumer)
-processes (from greasy to scoured to carbonised and finally to wool top)
She highlights the resilience of the industry as well as between the animal side and the people side of the industry.
Whilst a number of schools this year have been inspired by famous artists the James Ruse students said they had been inspired by each other