Award-winning artist Gordon Hookey has been recognised as the 2017 Arts, Education and Law Alumnus of the Year.
Born in Cloncurry and a descendent of the Waanyi people, Gordon is one of the leading Australian artists of his generation and is known for politically charged work that explores the intersections between Indigenous and non-Indigenous cultures.
An acclaimed painter and sculptor, Gordon has exhibited extensively both internationally and throughout Australia.
Since graduating from a Master of Visual Arts at the Queensland College of Art in 2012, his works have been acquired for public and private collections around the world, including the National Gallery of Australia, Queensland’s Gallery of Modern Art and the Osaka Museum of Ethnology in Japan.
Gordon has used his work to address a variety of historical and contemporary political issues, from the injustices suffered by Indigenous Australians, to Australia’s intervention in the Middle East and immigration.
Gordon continues to exhibit his work on the international art stage.
His art has hung in The National New Australian Art 2017, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney and earlier this year he was one of just three Australian artists invited to show their work at Documenta, dubbed the “Olympics of the art world”. The blockbuster exhibition is held every five years and features the best contemporary artists from around the world.It attracted more than a million visitors over 100 days, including collectors, curators and media.
Gordon, who received the award at a gala ceremony in Brisbane on October 13, says he was surprised and honoured by the accolade.
“This award is important to me, although it came completely out of the blue,” he said.
“My time at the QCA really helped me refine my thinking and it was wonderful to be immersed in an environment where everything is about art.”
His advice for current students is simple.
“Don’t see yourself as a student, start looking at yourself as a practicing artist,” he said.
Held at Cloudland Brisbane, the seventh annual AEL Alumni Awards recognise the achievements and successes of Arts, Education and Law graduates.
Outstanding School Alumnus Award winners:
Petr Tichy – Griffith Film School.
Dr Brian Bumbarger – Griffith School of Criminology and Criminal Justice.
Suzie Brady – Griffith School of Humanities, Languages and Social Sciences.
Gordon Hookey – Queensland College of Art.
Dr Brett Mason – Griffith Law School.
Ryan Walsh – Queensland Conservatorium.
Tony Kennedy – Griffith School of Education and Professional Studies.
Outstanding Young Alumnus of the Year Winner:
International lawyer, co-founder and Director of GO1. Entrepreneur and founder of The Schoolbag, described by the World Economic Forum as a ‘Global Shaper’. Australia’s 2016 Youth Representative to the United Nations and 2014 Australian Young Innovator of the Year.