New expressions for Terra Australis – Stuart Watters

Watters - Stuart - Timberland-152x106cm

Image credit: Timberland, by Stuart Watters

Sydney based artist Stuart Watters holds a Master of Fine Arts from the College of Fine Arts, UNSW and currently lectures in painting and drawing at the Australian Catholic University, Sydney.[1] He has held a number of solo exhibitions and has been selected as a finalist for a number of prizes including the Redlands Westpac Contemporary Art Prize, The Fishers’ Ghost, The Salon des Refusés and Dobell Prize.[2] Watters was also selected by the Art Gallery of NSW as a 2016 Wynne Prize winner and was awarded a Highly Commended in the Georges River Art Prize 2019.

His entry Timberland is a large oil on canvas piece which represents the Australian landscape. Timberland pays particular attention to the upward thrust of the central trunk. The branch like forms spread unpredictably and the horizontal and vertical elements vary in volume, scale and proximity. Watters’ interpretation of the Australian landscape is influenced by the concept that landscape is culture before it is nature. [3]

Watters aspires to present the Australian landscape into new expressions or an alternative mode. He claims a sense of “solidarity with a generation of painters … who think it necessary to take back the centre of painting left blank in the wake of late Modernism.”[4]

Like many contemporary practitioners he considers that abstract painting has shifted and now operates beyond the rhetoric of Modernism. His compositions begin with investigative drawings, which he then transforms into free flowing geometric forms. Watters paints with a distinct abstract language that is resistant to any fixed meaning. Unplanned and intuitive, they appear as collapsed tangled forms drowning in a sea of thick paint.

The Georges River Art Prize 2019 will be on display until the end of January 2020.


Georges River Art Prize 2019

25 October 2019 – 30 January 2020

Hurstville Museum & Gallery

14 MacMahon Street, Hurstville


Georges River Art Prize Open Day

Join us for a fun day for the whole family. Experience guided tours, art and craft activities and view the Georges River Art Prize 2019.

Saturday 11 January, 2020

Drop in for art and craft activities and exhibit your artwork with prizes to be won!
11.00am – 2.00pm

Guided tours (15 minutes)
Georges River Art Prize 2019

Free event, all welcome!


Art Gallery of NSW,

Artists Profile,

Gallery 9,

Paddington Art Prize,

[1] ‘Stuart Watters’, Gallery 9, viewed 16 December 2019,

[2] Ibid.

[3] Art Gallery of NSW,

[4] Artists Profile,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s