19 May 2016

Geoff Wilson: Interrogated Landscape. Essay by Barry Pearce. Published by Samstag Museum of Art, University of  South Australia, 2015. Photographer: Sandra Elms.In Auckland yesterday, the University of South Australia’s Samstag Museum of Art was awarded the prestigious Museums of Australasia Prize for the best book published in 2015 by a museum, science centre and art gallery from Australia and New Zealand. 

The prize recognises the book - Geoff Wilson: Interrogated Landscape - which celebrates the lifetime achievement of an exceptional artist whose extensive career has, until recently, remained outside the public gaze.

Erica Green, Director of the Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art said the prize was important peer recognition for the Museum, the artist and its authors.

“Our entry was up against books published by state and national institutions, and to be awarded this prize at this time is noteworthy, as it also recognises the important cultural contribution made by small to medium organisations such as the Samstag Museum of Art,” Green said.

“We’re also delighted the subject of the book, Geoff Wilson, and authors Barry Pearce and John Neylon are all alumni of the University of South Australia. 

“Their shared contribution to the Samstag Museum’s program particularly this year, as we celebrate the University’s and the Samstag Scholarships Program 25th anniversary, makes this award in 2016 so very special.

“Despite the notoriety this prize will offer, I’m sure Geoff Wilson will remain the same genuinely modest person who has chosen to give generously to many people and organisations over seven decades while he has lived and worked here in Adelaide as painter, teacher and mentor."

Geoff Wilson: Interrogated Landscape features more than 70 works, including paintings, works on paper and sketchbooks. It captures Geoff Wilson’s movement from watercolours in the 1940s into his semi-abstraction period in the 1960s and then his masterful modernist compositions up to 2013. 

Green said the book pays legacy to a significant Australian artist and his inspired subject – the South Australian landscape.

The Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art is one of UniSA’s leading creative centres; it aims to stimulate, challenge and engage its audiences with a program of diverse and innovative exhibitions, publications and associated public activities. It presents a changing exhibitions program of contemporary visual art, and art of the past that has relevance for us today.

Museums Australia is the national organisation, established in 1993, for the museums sector, committed to the conservation, continuation and communication of Australia's heritage. As a non-government, non-profit body, Museums Australia promotes museum sector development, articulates ethical standards, facilitates training, advances knowledge, addresses issues, and raises public awareness through its national and international networks.

For more information contact Erica Green on 0438 821 239.

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