I first heard about the Shelley Simpson Ceramics Prize from my Mum. She was on Mud Australia’s mailing list and forwarded the email announcing the prize, encouraging me to apply. At the time, I was struggling to make ends meet so I thought it was worth a shot.
My submission was quite different to what I've made before. I felt deeply connected to this body of work and felt it best represented who I was as an artist at that point in time.
My entry “Times Goes By” used clay as a material to convey the notion of time. The shape of the hemispheres was inspired by an old travel clock of my Mums. I was living in Melbourne during lockdown at the time so all iterations of the hemispheres were made in my corridor and unfired due to limited access to a kiln.
I felt really honored to be recognised as a finalist amongst a group of talented artists. When I was announced the winner, I was completely shocked.
Winning the prize has changed my life. It gave me more confidence knowing that I can move people without using words and reassurance that I was on the right path. The prize money itself helped with my final year of studies and gave me access to materials that I didn't have the funds to purchase prior.
Winning the SSCP opened doors that I could have never imagined. Prior to entering, I was planning to do honours, then move to the UK and do another course (an extra 2 years of study). I've now moved to Sydney, working at Mud Australia as a Retail Support Coordinator, working closely with our 10 global retail stores. I've got a new set of challenges and gaining experience in areas separate to my creative practice, which I'm really enjoying.
Covid in Melbourne really zapped my creativity, so I’ve been taking a short break, documenting my current experiences and making textiles. I look forward to approaching my creative practice with a fresh perspective.