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Regional Arts Development Central West NSW

Joyce Spencer Textile Awards

RR Pascoe_This Is The Pyrocene

Congratulations to Central West artists RR Pascoe (Portland) and Leanne Wicks (Kandos), recipients of 2023 textile awards to regional NSW artists.

media release, supplied, 4 May 2023

The Cad Factory, Western Riverina Arts and the Spencer Family are delighted to announce that the 2023 Joyce Spencer Textile Awards have been won by regional NSW artists RR Pascoe, Samantha Tannous and Leanne Wicks.

The Joyce Spencer Textiles Fellowship, Highly Commended Award and Mentorship are initiatives that supports textile artists based in regional NSW to develop and present new exhibitions. Named after the Narrandera artist Joyce Spencer (1928–2019), these awards continue Joyce’s absolute commitment and love of artistic practice.

“I’m honoured to be the 2023 recipient of the Joyce Spencer Textiles Fellowship,” said artist RR Pascoe.

“It will provide me the opportunity and support to develop and present a new body of work which has been inspired by the more tangential outcomes springing from a recent 18-month research and development project, designed to address progressive disabling health conditions by re-skilling in various digital design and fabrication techniques. I’m grateful for the opportunity Joyce’s family’s generous gift will give me to explore these ideas more fully in their own right, and excited to see what emerges from this process.”

As a multi-award-winning interdisciplinary artist and designer living in Portland NSW, on Wiradjuri country, Pascoe is most known for her wearable art, having held exhibitions in Australia, New Zealand, America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The $4000 fellowship will assist Pascoe to present her new artworks at the Annexe in Portland NSW.

Sarah McEwan from the Cad Factory explains, “This year we had a number of outstanding applications which inspired us so much, that we decided to create an additional award, The Joyce Spencer Highly Commended Award, worth $1500 which has been awarded to fibre-based artist Samantha Tannous.

“The intersection of art and craft will crystallise in a new series of sculptures thanks to this generous Highly Commended Award,” said Samantha who is from the NSW south coast and will hold an exhibition at Gallery 76 in Concord NSW.

“The sculptures I’m creating will be a homage to my childhood obsession with haberdashery and a nod to the many fibre and textile artists who have their roots in traditional crafts. Joyce’s creative application to pushing the boundaries of materials and techniques is inspirational and I hope to continue this exploration through my work and through teaching fibre arts to others.”

Aanya Whitehead, Executive Director, Western Riverina Arts said, “it’s inspiring to see that regional NSW has so many remarkable textiles artists pushing practice and contributing to the arts sector.”

Kandos artist, Leanne Wicks, based on Dabee/Wiradjuri Country, is passionate about birdlife and knitting. As the recipient of the Joyce Spencer Textiles Mentorship worth $500, Wicks was invited by the North East Wiradjuri Centre in Kandos to scientifically record the bird life on a site they manage. From this report, she will knit representations of the birds for exhibition in their Centre.

As part of her mentorship, Wicks will receive the opportunity to discuss her project with an established Australian textile artist.

“It is a unique opportunity to benefit from the advice and expertise of others in my own artistic journey. I hope my use of the traditional technique of knitting in the scientific field helps to raise awareness of birds on Country,” responded Leanne.

Image Captions
Image One: ‘This Is The Pyrocene’ (2020), RR Pascoe. Photograph courtesy of the artist.
Image Two: Joyce Spencer Textiles Award Recipients 2023, RR Pascoe, Samantha Tannous and Leanne Wicks. Photographs courtesy of the artists.