In 2021, AMCS introduced the Art Against Ageism competition with a mission to combat age-related discrimination and empower seniors through art. This year, the competition garnered 250+ participants locally and internationally, challenging stereotypes and celebrating artists of all ages and backgrounds.
We wholeheartedly thank our esteemed panel of judges for this year’s competition:
- Emeritus Professor Rosalind Croucher AM FAAL FRSA FACLM(Hon) – Australian Human Rights Commission, Acting Age Discrimination Commissioner
- Ian Henschke – National Seniors Australia, Chief Advocate
- Lizbeth Gonzalez Naranjo – Elder Rights Advocacy, Communications and Marketing Coordinator
- Sue McGrath – EveryAGE Counts, Representative
- Ellie Packham – Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV), Policy Lead – Ageing and Aged Services
- Thomas Lopez – Australian Communities Foundation (ACF), Relationship Manager
- Mary Lyttle – Australian Multicultural Community Services, Consumer Advocate
- Kheshna Goburdhun – Australian Multicultural Community Services, Marketing Coordinator
On October 4, 2023, at the Australian Communities Foundation Community of Giving Lounge, we hosted an afternoon tea event where we showcased finalist artworks alongside esteemed guest speakers:
- Elizabeth Drozd OAM, CEO of Australian Multicultural Community Services
- Sophia Rinaldis, Director of the Disability Rights Team at the Australian Human Rights Commission
- Brenda McAuley-Hines, Team Leader at Elder Rights Advocacy
- Anne Sinclair, our first prize winner (represented by AMCS Marketing Manager, Katie Levine)
- Neil Gude, our second-prize winner
- Carly Severino, Director of Community for the Australian Communities Foundation
Following this gathering, we continued the exhibition on the 5th and 6th of October 2023, extending a warm welcome to friends, relatives of our guests, and participants. This provided an opportunity for them to appreciate the remarkable artwork on display and join us in our mission.
Explore the top 10 artworks below, commencing with the winners and finalists, each accompanied by a description of their artistic contributions.
Winner – 1st Prize
Participant Name: Anne Marie Sinclair
Artwork Title: Black Velvet
Anne Marie Sinclair, a 64-year-old library technician, embarked on her artistic journey later in life, drawing inspiration from the elegance and style of older women.
Her winning artwork, “Black Velvet,” celebrates the beauty and resilience of older women, defying age-related stereotypes.
Winner – 2nd Place
Participant Name: Neil Gude
Artwork Title: Tango Romance
Neil Gude, a central Victorian watercolour artist, paints a captivating picture of an older couple dancing the Tango, showcasing the intimacy, physicality, and romance of the dance.
His artwork demonstrates that romance and connection can thrive at any stage of life.
Winner – 3rd Place
Participant Name: William Mcmartin
Artwork Title: Imagination Has No Age
William Mcmartin, a 9-year-old artist, believes that age should not limit creativity and enthusiasm for life.
His drawing of Iris Apfel, a 102-year-old fashion icon, celebrates the idea that imagination knows no age boundaries, emphasizing the value of older individuals in our society.
Participant Name: Ally Brunacci
Artwork Title: A Shared Moment
Ally Brunacci, a 19-year-old artist from Sydney, creates portraits of older individuals, fascinated by the stories and details etched in their faces.
Her artwork, titled “A Shared Moment,” captures the essence of a unique connection when an older man winks, inviting viewers into a wonderful inside joke.
Participant Name: Joanne Ting Mahon
Artwork Title: Fruits of her Labour
Dr. Joanne Ting Mahon, a GP with a passion for art, presents “Fruits of her Labour,” portraying her 82-year-old mother in the garden with her persimmon tree.
This artwork celebrates the joy, capabilities, and resilience of older individuals, echoing the story of family and heritage.
Particpant Name: Gerardo Chierchia
Artwork title: Eternal Vitality
Gerardo Chierchia, a voluntary worker and photography enthusiast, beautifully depicts an older man’s determined stride along the beach.
“Eternal Vitality” signifies the enduring strength and spirit that transcends age, challenging stereotypes associated with growing older.
Participant Name: Ken Roberts
Artwork Title: Let’s Celebrate!
Ken Roberts, a retired nurse, believes in celebrating the wisdom and contributions of older individuals.
His painting, “Let’s Celebrate!” features an older LGBTQI individual breaking free from age-related stereotypes, inviting others to join in the celebration of life.
Participant Name: Fabio Segatori
Artwork Title: Frank The Fighter
Fabio Segatori, an aged care worker with a passion for photography, presents “Frank The Fighter,” a photo capturing the remarkable story of Frank, a 90-year-old.
This image symbolizes the resilience of individuals like Frank, serving as a powerful statement against ageism.
Participant Name: Lorena Gonzalez
Artwork Title: Susan
Lorena Gonzalez’s artwork titled “Susan” is a portrait that captures the essence of Susan, a Flamenco Dance Teacher based in Brisbane. The portrait was created to empower Susan and challenge age-related stereotypes that made her feel her societal contribution was diminishing with age.
Lorena organised a photo shoot at an inspiring venue near Brisbane, where Susan’s dance expression was realized. The portrait embodies Susan’s energy, significance as a dance teacher, and vitality. It empowers her to confidently promote her classes, challenging age stereotypes and celebrating her radiant presence.
Participant Name: Margaret O’Neill
Artwork Title: The Mixer
Margaret O’Neill, a 72-year-old retired psychologist pursuing her passion for art, expresses her love for music and electronic music creation through “The Mixer.”
Her artwork challenges age-related assumptions, highlighting the significance of pursuing one’s passions regardless of age.
Group Name: Eastern European Respite Group
Artwork Title: One for All, all for One
The artwork by the Eastern European Respite Group, titled “Positive Aging, Fighting Aging Stereotypes,” is a vibrant collage that celebrates the beauty of ageing gracefully and challenges stereotypes. At its heart, the collage features an elderly lady joyfully blowing soap bubbles, each representing a facet of her fulfilling life.
The bubbles symbolize diverse elements, including card games, travel, cooking, gardening, heritage, and the desire for companionship. This masterpiece, created with various materials, showcases the talents and interests of participants whose ages range from 70 to 87.
It underscores the importance of art expression in their lives, providing a platform for self-expression, creativity, and communication. This artwork empowers the elderly to share their unique experiences and challenges age-related stereotypes, promoting a more inclusive and empathetic society that values the wisdom and vitality that comes with age.