Mandy White Named Invitation Art Prize Overall Winner


Mandy White has been named overall winner of the 2021 Invitation Art Prize (IAP) exhibition – the City of Joondalup’s most prestigious visual arts competition.

The announcement was made at the launch of the IAP exhibition, which runs until Sunday 24 October at Westfield Whitford City.

Ms White received $25,000 in prizemoney for her entry, titled Creatures of the Crystal Caves.

Born in 1978 of Yamatji heritage, Ms White grew up in Guildford, Western Australia and began her art practice in her thirties when she started classes at Disability in the Arts, Disadvantage in the Arts, Australia (DADAA).

Over the subsequent decade, Ms White has become a passionate, award-winning artist and a strong role model for artists with disability.

As well as featuring in many exhibitions, she has received public art commissions, and her work is held in various public and private collections, including the Art Gallery of Western Australia and DADAA.

Many of Ms White’s artworks are interpretations of Yamatji stories told to her by her mother. In her IAP-winning artwork, “the crystal caves are a magical place in the landscape where creatures play. The ghosts fly around as the animals play amongst the crystals. The animals are cheeky, with special powers that allow them to fly with the ghosts to scare people”.

Judges remarked that “the paintings are open and optimistic. A whimsical sense of play draws one into an intrigue where creatures reveal connections of peoples across time. Innovative use of colour sees the motifs floating in a world that speaks of moments of becoming”.

The judging panel for the 2021 IAP was:

  • Dr Laetitia Wilson, Exhibitions Manager, Holmes à Court Gallery
  • Dr Jon Tarry, Honorary Fellow, UWA School of Design
  • Sue Starcken, Curator Arts and Humanities, ECU.

The IAP is an acquisitive art prize open to professional Western Australian artists, and is acknowledged by the visual arts industry as one of the major contemporary visual art prizes for professional artists in the state.

Joondalup Mayor Albert Jacob said 154 expressions of interest were received from Western Australian artists wishing to participate in the IAP this year.

“When Joondalup became a City in its own right in 1998, it was considered a priority to cultivate a modern, urban and culturally-enriched environment with a quality, contemporary visual art program,” Mayor Jacob said.

“The IAP enhances Joondalup’s reputation as a local government dedicated to encouraging and fostering culture and the arts by celebrating the creative talents of professional Western Australian artists.

“While the past 18 months have certainly been tough for many of us, it is pleasing to see the local arts and cultural industry emerge from the many challenges that COVID-19 has presented.

“Never has it been more important to encourage and support the local arts industry, which has been doing things tough during COVID-19, and the City continues to look at opportunities to support this sector.

“I congratulate Mandy on her success along with all 30 artists selected to exhibit at the IAP, and express our gratitude to the judging panel and to Westfield Whitford City for hosting the 2021 IAP.”

Members of the public can vote for their favourite artwork in the Popular Choice Award whilst visiting the IAP exhibition at Westfield Whitford City.

The winner of the Popular Choice Award will be announced at the end of the exhibition after votes have been counted.

2021 Invitation Art Prize Exhibiting Artists Annette Peterson, Bjoern Rainer-Adamson, Britt Mikkelsen, Bruce and Nicole Slatter, Bruno Booth, Caspar Fairhall, Christophe Canato, Desmond Mah, Di Cubitt, Dushong Rohin Kickett, Elmari Steyn, Fiona Gavino, Harrison See, Jessee Lee Johns, Jurek Wybraniec, Kelsey Ashe, Kieron Broadhurst, Leanne Bray, Lindsay Harris, Liz Gray, Lucille Martin, Mandy White, Marla Bishop, Nathan Beard, Ron Nyisztor, Ross Potter, Shaun Wake-Mazey, Susanna Castleden, Toni Wilkinson.