Griffith University Art Museum has won the Art Association of Australia and New Zealand Best University Art Museum Exhibition Catalogue for their publication With Heart & Hand: Art Pottery in Queensland 1900-1950.

Announced at the annual AAANZ conference in Auckland last week, the prize was judged by University of Newcastle’s Dr Una Rey, who commended the publication’s original contributions to knowledge in the field, thorough research and careful connoisseurship of a neglected area of study.

“It draws attention to the influence of late nineteenth century Aestheticism and the Art & Craft movement, as well as post WW1 art therapy, Queensland’s educational policy and Harvey’s teaching methods. It also highlights women’s largely undocumented contributions to the field of art and craft ceramics and their roles as mentors and teachers.”

Dr Rey further praised the publication’s informative, scholarly and accessible style and overall presentation.

“The clean catalogue design and excellent production values make With Heart and Hand a pleasure to hold and to eyeball.”

Director of Griffith University Art Museum Angela Goddard said she was thrilled with the news.

“This publication was a huge undertaking for our small team, and I am so happy everyone involved has been recognised for their hard work.”

Released to coincide with the exhibition of the same name, With Heart and Hand highlights Brisbane’s artistic scene in the first decades of the twentieth century and the importance of pottery in developing art in regional areas, as well as the social history of the medium.

Ms Goddard said it was fitting that Griffith University Art Museum published this research, given the University’s central role in art pottery’s history.

“Queensland art pottery is intrinsically linked to Griffith University through LJ Harvey, whose pottery classes were initiated in 1916 at the Central Technical College in Brisbane, later to become the Queensland College of Art,” she said.

“Harvey’s classes operated for over thirty years and were unique globally, ultimately becoming the largest pottery school in Australia.”

Goddard also said this award recognises the extraordinary contribution of women to Queensland’s art history.

“The research undertaken for With Heart & Hand was timely in that it re-evaluated the role of women in building the state’s art sector and revealed the importance of art therapy in post—World War I Queensland.”

LJ Harvey and his students were so successful in rehabilitating the manual skills of returned soldiers and children stricken with infantile paralysis, that their work was used to help the University of Queensland establish occupational therapy as a distinct discipline in 1955.

With Heart and Hand: Art Pottery in Queensland 1900-1950 is available via Griffith University Art Museum’s website, or by visiting the gallery at South Bank.