Hi, my name is Scott Sharry and I'm a the partner in charge of the Brisbane office. I have the great pleasure of speaking to you about our 13th Annual Art Award. Before I continue though, I would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which our offices are located, the Turrbal and Jagera people, and to pay my respects to their elders, past, present and emerging. It's normally at this time of year when we unveil the finalists and announce the winner of this award. However, due to COVID, instead of our traditional awards function, this year we'll be doing things a little differently with a virtual tour and prize ceremony. We are however just as excited to see the brilliant and diverse selection of some of Queensland's established artists.
Hi. My name is Brett Lethbridge. I'm with Lethbridge Gallery and we have the enormous privilege of managing the Clayton Utz art prize each and every year. One of the special things about the Clayton Utz art prize is it's one of those rare occasions where Eagle Street meets up with the QCA and with the great artists of Queensland and it's such a great union between business and art. The number of entries and the quality of entries increase every year until we have what is now the major event at Clayton Utz and we're enormously proud to be a part of that.
The $20,000 Clayton Utz Art Award is an initiative we've promoted over the last 13 years to encourage, reward and promote artists who have a Queensland base or connection. The Award continues to attract a rich diversity of talent across a wide variety of art forms and 2020 is really no exception. We're again proud to showcase the work of the Award finalists in our Riparian Plaza offices for our people and clients to enjoy over the next 12 months. Hopefully we get to welcome you during that period so you can see the art in the flesh.
I love seeing the collection of top artwork that we get every year and to go through the process of selecting the finalists and to see also the development of the artists that we'd first seen a decade ago and how their work and their recognition and their careers have expanded over the last 10 years.
Well I think it's a great opportunity. I think these opportunities have some value and a lot of that's to do with exposure. You get to tell your story to a bigger audience.
Usually we would have more than 40,000 people come through our offices each year and they are people who may never have had the chance to visit an art gallery, to take in an exhibition, or who in the normal course of business would get the opportunity to see this artwork but they can see it here and they do.
The works represent a strong selection of artistic styles and engaging and interesting ideas. We appreciate having them and look forward to the Award helping to increase the profile of the artists and to the winner, the opportunity to move their career forward and allow them to explore their ideas in a more profound way.
You know, opportunities for artists are rare so to have a prize like this supported in the venue that it is, is also important for artists because the oxygen for an artist is exposure and this particular venue and this particular prize gives them exposure to a group of people who would not in the normal course of business see their work. Who knows where it can lead onto, but it can only be a positive thing, and it is.
I think overall to be for artists to be involved in competitions, to be recognised in competitions, to be shortlisted is, is a great boost to your own morale, to be shown with peers, people that you appreciate is really amazing to be part of. It gives you the drive to continue, to continue to make work and hopefully in the future I suppose be, be recognised by the bigger institutions too.
We extend our thanks to this year's Award judge, Laini Burton, to Brett, and to the Lethbridge Gallery for their expert management and coordination. Of course we also congratulate all of the finalists and we look forward to announcing the winner virtually next week. So please stay tuned.