Theme of resistance at the heart of arts media exhibition

Date published: 17 December 2015

An international arts media award and exhibition that has attracted more than 400 entries from 54 countries will open at Pinnacles Gallery this weekend.

The Screengrab International Media Arts Award, established in 2009 by James Cook University Media Design lecturer Mitch Goodwin is now in its seventh year and has grown into a significant award for contemporary artists and theorists working with screen-based media across the globe.

The award is a co-production between Pinnacles Gallery, Townsville City Council and the Arts and Creative Media department at James Cook University who co-sponsor the $10,000 artist prize.

Community and Culture Committee chair Cr Sue Blom said Screengrab7 had attracted a record number of entries with a particularly strong representation from countries of unrest or political oppression, such as Turkey, Iran, Ukraine and Israel.

"Of these 400 entries, we’ve shortlisted 28 for the exhibition which represent 12 countries," Cr Blom said.

"Screengrab7 explores the theme of ‘resistance’ and all its private, political and social connotations.

"Artists have responded to the theme with some searing compositions that reflect the troubled and often fraught existence that many people in the world are currently enduring on a daily basis."

Mr Goodwin said the works submitted for Screengrab7 reflected the growing availability of media technologies that supported a more flexible approach to screen-based media display.

"The complexity and imaginative way works are being presented signal a distinct shift in media art," he said.

"What the theme of ‘resistance’ also brings to mind is not just political resistance but also notions of physics, of human emotions and psychological resistance. The exhibition reflects this in works that examine this diverse interpretation of the theme."

Works represented include an array of video art, essay, documentary, media assemblage, video installation, digital animation, interactive and generative media.

The winner of the $10,000 prize will be announced by Australian Centre for the Moving Image assistant curator Fiona Trigg on Saturday, December 19 at 7pm at Pinnacles Gallery.

The exhibition will be on display until February 28.