A concave sculpture into which is projected a video of two men posing for a portrait has won its creator the $35,000 annual Dr Harold Schenberg Art Prize awarded through The University of Western Australia.
St Kilda-based artist Lachlan Petras said winning the prize meant he could focus on more ambitious projects.
Mr Petras, who completed Honours in sculpture at Monash University last year, was one of several emerging artists featured in the Hatched National Graduate Exhibition at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art.
The Dr Schenberg prize is awarded to an artist featured in this exhibition.
Mr Petras' sculpture, entitled ‘Aggregate', explores identity and masculinity.
"One of the figures, who wears a mirrored suit that reflects the environment, is much taller than the other, who is tattooed with overtly masculine sci-fi and pop culture symbols," Mr Petras said.
"As the film is bent by the object into which it's projected, the mirrored figure appears smaller than the tattooed man, which does not correspond to their actual sizes. They are distorted and intermixed by the object."
Mr Petras said the elliptical shape, which is 2m wide, 1m high and 1m deep, was composed of 350 single pieces of plywood and took five months to create.
Thanks to the prize, he has been able to work on a bigger installation, ‘Astrolabe', for an upcoming exhibition at Melbourne's Linden Centre for Contemporary Art. This kinetic sculpture is of a wheel mounted on a wall. Televisions attached to the wheel play videos of pilots in G-force training. The exhibition, "Trial and Error" starts on 29 June.
Dr Schenberg was a respected WA dermatologist, a renowned art collector and a passionate art benefactor. UWA is one of the main beneficiaries of his generosity and pays tribute to him and his lasting legacy. Through his significant contribution to UWA, Dr Schenberg continues to support the arts and nurture emerging artistic talent.