Event Is Art a Competition?

Is Art a Competition?

Panel Discussion

29 July 2023

Do art competitions embody the essence of art, with artists vying for opportunities and endorsement, fame and fortune, relevance and recognition? Or is art, instead, a landscape of communal enquiry, collective creativity, and care? Can we have it both ways? Is there a sweet spot? What does success look like? What should it look like?

Join our local panel: Elena Dias-Jayasinha (Associate Curator, Museum of Brisbane—and curator, the churchie emerging art prize 2022), Natalya Hughes (artist and Senior Lecturer, Queensland College of the Arts, Griffith University—and winner of the 2020 Sunshine Coast Art Award), Andrew McNamara (art historian and Emeritus Professor, Queensland University of Technology), and Ryan Renshaw (art dealer).


COVID-19 Advice

The IMA strongly encourages mask-wearing onsite in the galleries and for events to keep our community safe. If you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or are feeling unwell, please stay home. ⁠



We are committed to making the IMA accessible to people of all abilities, their families, and carers, as well as visitors of different ages and different backgrounds.

The gallery entrance is on the ground floor of the Judith Wright Arts Centre, on Berwick Street. There is wheelchair access and an accessible toilet with baby changing facilities also located on the ground floor, and we welcome guide and support dogs.

If you plan to attend this event and have specific support needs we can accommodate, please contact engagement@ima.org.au, call (07) 3252 5750, or ask our friendly staff on-site. Read our access information for visitors here.

Guest Info
  • Elena Dias-Jayasinha is a Sri Lankan-Australian curator and art historian. She is Associate Curator at the Museum of Brisbane. She studied Art History and Japanese at the University of Queensland and was the 2020 recipient of the Paula and Tony Kinnane Art History Scholarship. Her past curatorial projects include the churchie emerging art prize 2022, Institute of Modern Art, 2022 and Music of Spheres, University of Queensland Art Museum, 2020–21.

    Natalya Hughes is a Brisbane-based artist whose practice explores decorative and ornamental traditions and their associations with the feminine, the body and excess. Hughes won the Sunshine Coast Art Prize in 2020. She was a finalist in the 2023, 2022, and 2018 Sulman Prize at the Art Gallery of NSW, among other art prizes. Her work has been included in institutional exhibitions at the National Gallery of Australia, Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, Tarrawarra Museum of Art, and more. Hughes completed a Bachelor of Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane in 2001 and a PhD in Art Theory at the College of Fine Art (UNSW) in 2009. She is the Honours Program Director, Visual Arts at the Queensland College of Art. She is represented by Milani Gallery (Brisbane) and Sullivan + Strumpf (Sydney).

    Andrew McNamara is an art historian and Emeritus Professor, Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane. His research interests include modernism; contemporary art; Australian and Indigenous art; design and architecture; critical cultural theory in relation to technology, society and media; and aesthetics. His most recent publications include: Undesign (Routledge, 2018); Surpassing Modernity: Ambivalence in Art, Politics and Society (Bloomsbury, London, 2018/19); and with Philip Goad, Ann Stephen, Harriet Edquist and Isabel Wünsche, Bauhaus Diaspora and Beyond: Transforming Education through Art, Design and Architecture (Miegunyah and Power, 2019).

Image: Kate Land, ‘Podium Finish’, 2020. Courtesy the artist.

Similar Events

18 February 202318 Feb 2023

'The Churchie' Applicant Information Session


28 January 202328 Jan 2023

Unmaking with Jessie French

Artist Demonstration

08 February 202008 Feb 2020

Late capitalism’s broken promises

with Daniel McKewen

22 March 201822 Mar 2018

David Elliott

IMA Talks

06 March 202106 Mar 2021

Vitality becomes you: the essence of a flower essence


16 October 201416 Oct 2014

Sarah Browne with Dr Annita Boyd

In Conversation

The IMA acknowledges, thanks, and pays our deepest respect to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that we work with and the Country we work on.