Queensland College of Art graduates Kim Ah Sam and Azadeh Hamzeii are among 18 emerging artists selected for the Hatched National Graduate Show.
The prestigious exhibition at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art has been running since 1992, and showcases the country’s best up-and-coming artists.
The works on display this year span a range of disciplines including painting, sculpture, installation, sound and video.
A quiet achiever
Bachelor of Contemporary Australian Indigenous Art (CAIA) graduate Kim Ah Sam said she was “over the moon” about her selection.
“They had over 70 applications from around Australia, so I just about fell off my chair when I heard that I’d been chosen,” she said.
“I’m a very quiet achiever, so to be chosen for something like this was absolutely amazing.”
Kim is a proud Kuku Yalanji and Kalkadoon woman, and her work reflects her cultural and spiritual identity.
Her artistic practice encompasses everything from drypoint etching to weaving, printmaking and papermaking, and she has used her work to spiritually re-connect with her father’s country, the Kalkadoon.
“I have always done traditional dot painting, and I came here to explore that further, but I’ve really enjoyed embracing new techniques and finding new ways to tell my story,” she said.
“I’ve fallen in love with print-making and weaving, and these works tells the story of my journey back to country.
“We have a very emotional and spiritual connection to the land, and that is a big part of the CAIA experience.”
Pursuing her passion
Bachelor of Fine Art graduate Azadeh Hamzeii will show several video installations at Hatched.
“I was thrilled to be selected for a national exhibition so soon after graduating,” she said.
“It’s a great honour.”
The deeply personal works features Azadeh, her friends and family. One, shot on salt flats in her native Iran, questions the transformative power of prayer. Another, which features the artist’s husband adorning her body with fishing hooks and melted beeswax, plays with the tension between ornamentation and threat.
“I’m inspired by mentors here like Chris Bennie and Justene Williams who have managed to carve out really diverse art practices across different mediums,” she said.
“My own work encompasses everything from photography and video, performance and installation art.”
After working as an engineer for most of her life, Azadeh decided to pursue her passion when she immigrated to Australia. While balancing a full-time career as an engineer, she enrolled in a Bachelor of Fine Art at the Queensland College of Art (QCA).
Azadeh said she had enjoyed the flexibility and freedom on offer at the QCA.
“That’s the beauty of the degree – there is a vast variety of artistic practice, you’re given the ability to balance study and work, and the freedom to experiment.”
Queensland College of Art Director Professor Derrick Cherrie said Kim and Azadeh were two of the many promising artists to emerge from the QCA.
“We are delighted to see Kim and Azadeh’s work selected for this national exhibition,” he said.
“Hatched provides an opportunity for graduates to present their work in a leading contemporary art gallery alongside their peers from across the country, as well as opportunities for international exposure.
“The fact that our graduates are consistently represented at Hatched reflects the calibre of students studying at the QCA.”