Guidelines for Entry
2023 Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards
Need help with your entry?
Please contact the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory if you need assistance regarding submission of the entry form.
Fiona Bennie, Exhibitions Coordinator
Telephone: (08) 8936 4208
ABOUT TELSTRA NATSIAA
Taking place on Larrakia Country, the Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (Telstra NATSIAA) encourages submissions from all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists from across the continent. The Awards were founded by the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory (MAGNT) in 1984, and remain the longest running awards dedicated to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and artists. Since 1992, Telstra have been the principal partner. The 2023 Telstra NATSIAA marks the 40th year that MAGNT has presented these annual awards and exhibition, and this year’s entrants, finalists and winners will become another chapter of the Awards’ story.
Open to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, Telstra NATSIAA is a non-acquisitive award that is free to enter and encourages artists to submit an artwork of their choice in one of the Award Categories. It awards a total of $190,000 in prize money each year.
The overall Telstra Art Award of $100,000 cash (excl. GST) is awarded to the artwork considered by the judges to be the most outstanding artwork in the exhibition.
The following Award Categories offer the Award recipient $15,000 (excl. GST) and are chosen by the judges:
Telstra General Painting Award
Telstra Bark Painting Award
Telstra Work on Paper Award
Wandjuk Marika Memorial 3D Award (sponsored by Telstra)
Telstra Multimedia Award
Telstra Emerging Artist Award
In addition to the above Award Categories is the Telstra People’s Choice Award, which is a non-monetary Award, chosen by popular vote.
See Definitions to learn more about each Award Category.
ELIGIBILITY AND CONDITIONS OF ENTRY
An Artist is eligible to participate in Telstra NATSIAA if the individual or collective complies with the following conditions:
The Artist identifies as an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person.
The Artwork submitted is the original work of the Artist.
Artworks must have been completed within the last twelve months prior to the close of entry date midnight ACST Friday, 17 March 2023.
Artworks, including any editions, must not have been displayed, published or previously entered into an exhibition, award, competition or festival prior to the opening of Telstra NATSIAA.
Artworks must remain under media embargo until Saturday, 22 July 2023.
Artworks must be the property of the Artist. Proof of ownership may be requested.
Artworks must be available for the entire duration of the exhibition.
Each Artist is permitted to submit two submissions - one Artwork as an individual and one Artwork created in collaboration with other Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander artists.
In the case of collaborative Artworks, the details of each of the collaborators need to be included on the online entry form including their name, place of residence, date of birth and artist’s language groups.
Artworks with non-Indigenous collaborators can be entered as long as the principal artistic vision and creative output are the work of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists. Telstra NATSIAA acknowledges and accepts the production of artworks can involve non-Indigenous participation in the formation of the Artwork. The final Artwork will only be attributed to collaborators who are Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander.
The submitted Artwork must not be altered or further worked on from the time of submission. The Artwork that arrives at MAGNT must be identical to the photograph attached in the entry submission.
The Artwork entered must be no bigger than (H) 300 x (W) 300 x (D) 300 cm. This must be the maximum overall measurement of the artwork that is inclusive of all its pieces in its intended display configuration.
Artworks are to arrive at MAGNT in good, clean, displayable and undamaged condition. Artworks received in a poor or damaged condition, that differ from the images of the Artwork included on the online entry form, may be excluded from the exhibition and will be returned to the Finalist at their expense.
Members of the Telstra NATSIAA Selection Panel and Judging Panel, are not eligible to enter the Awards, nor are MAGNT employees and their immediate relatives.
The Artist must agree to the Warranty/Declaration on the online entry form.
Artists selected as Finalists will be required to sign an Artist Agreement between the Artist and MAGNT. A copy of the draft Agreement is available from MAGNT upon request.
Award recipients are expected to attend the Media Preview, Awards Ceremony and associated events on the Awards Ceremony weekend. In the event that an award recipient is unable to attend, they may send a representative. MAGNT will reimburse up to $2,000 per Award recipient to cover return travel to Darwin and 4 night’s accommodation upon receiving the associated tax invoices. MAGNT will further offer cab charges for travel to and from airports and accommodation and between accommodation to MAGNT to attend the Telstra NATSIAA events.
If the Artist does not comply with any of these eligibility requirements, the Artist will become ineligible.
The Artist or their Agent must enter a complete Entry Form before the Closing Date for Entries via the online form. The form is available at https://magnt.smartygrants.com.au/2023TelstraNATSIAA
Entries for selection must include:
Completed online entry form
Agreement to the Warranty/Declaration in the online entry form
For artworks, at least one and up to three high resolution jpg images of the finished Artwork at 300dpi resolution and clearly labelled with the Artist’s name
For multimedia artworks that include moving image or video, entries should be a downloadable file submitted with a shared URL (web link) using Dropbox or Google Drive. Where relevant, a subtitled version of the entry must be provided by the Artist
High resolution digital portrait at 300dpi of the Artist to be used for promotional purposes
A one-page artist's CV provided electronically in Microsoft® Word format
Short artist’s statement up to 50 words which will be used for online and social media listings
Brief artist’s statement of up to 100 words that will be used on the exhibition labels accompanying the Artwork in the exhibition and in the exhibition publication
Extended artist’s statement of up to 450 words providing judges and curators with further reference information supporting the artist’s approach to their art practice
Instructions for any special requirements needed for the installation or hanging of the entered Artwork
Clear indication of the orientation the Artwork is to be hung or other display requirements
A complete entry form includes:
All fields of the Entry Form completed
The Artist has included a photograph of the entered work
The Artist has included a portrait photograph of themselves
The Artist has included their CV
All instructions needed to install and display the work
It is essential that the information provided in the form is accurate and the photographs portray the submitted Artwork to its best advantage so that the Selection Panel are provided with the strongest documentation. These must be of high resolution, JPG OR TIFF of 300 dpi and moving image must be a downloadable file submitted with a shared URL (web link). Artworks should be well lit with bright or natural light to ensure the colours of the work are shown accurately. To help the Artwork look its best, centre it in the photograph. Include shots from various angles and focused shots that highlight important details such as the texture of materials or fine mark-making that is integral to the Artwork and can only be seen in a detail shot.
Where an Artwork is made up of a number of pieces please include the details of each piece in the online entry form. The display of the Artwork in the exhibition will replicate the layout presented in the submitted photographs.
It is important to note that any Artwork delivered to MAGNT before an Artist has been selected as a Finalist will be returned at the cost of the entrant.
Once the Entry Form has been submitted for consideration by the Selection Panel no further additions or changes can be made to the Artwork. If any changes or additions are made, the Artwork will be considered ineligible.
Each year, a selection process is undertaken to choose the Finalists. Entry into the Telstra NATSIAA is highly competitive with approximately 300 entries received each year and around 60 artworks chosen for the exhibition.
All entries are carefully considered by the Selection Panel, which consists of three independent Aboriginal and/ or Torres Strait Islander people with extensive expertise in arts and culture.
The Panel selects the Finalists from the information submitted in the Entry Form.
Once the Selection Panel has selected the Finalists to be included in the exhibition, all entrants will be notified of the status of their entry and whether it has or has not been selected for the Telstra NATSIAA exhibition. The decision of the Selection Panel is final and no further discussion or correspondence about the decision will be entered into.
An Artist’s Agreement will be forwarded to all Finalists. The Agreement will contain information about the exhibition, the exhibition process, key dates and deadlines including when the artworks are due to be delivered at MAGNT and a list of the Awards special events.
Notification to all entrants of Selection Panel decision: by Tuesday, 11 April 2023
Please contact MAGNT if you have not been notified of the status of your entry by this date.
DELIVERY AND COLLECTION OF ARTWORK
If selected as a Finalist, the entered Artwork must be delivered to MAGNT by no later than Friday, 19 May 2023.
PREPARATION OF ARTWORK FOR DELIVERY
Barks must be strapped and arrive with fixing or hanging systems ready to hang.
For multimedia artworks that include moving image or video, entries should be a downloadable file submitted via Dropbox or Google Drive with a shared URL (web link) and include a copy of the software required for installation.
Please check to ensure that you enable the settings for file downloading and the ‘share via link’ setting is also enabled.
Where relevant, a subtitled version of the entry must be provided by the Artist.
Installation instructions are to be included in the submissions and provision needs to be made to supply specialised equipment that is required for the installation and showing of the video should MAGNT be unable to supply.
Artworks on canvas and linen
All canvases must be stretched and ready to hang prior to delivery to MAGNT. Please ensure all materials are completely dry prior to transporting.
Care should be taken that fixatives and binders used are sufficient to prevent the pigment from flaking, smudging and lifting from the surface.
Framed artworks are to be delivered using perspex or acrylic rather than glass to prevent damage to the artwork should breakage occur. Appropriate fixing systems to enable installation need to be attached to the frame.
Three dimensional artworks
Seasoned timber rather than 'green' timber should be used to avoid mould growth during transit and excessive shrinkage or cracking.
Artworks made of organic materials including wood should be packaged in a layer of absorbent material before adding protective plastic or bubble pack to allow it to breathe without sweating. Examples of appropriate breathable materials include Evolution® or cotton sheets and towels. It is also recommended to avoid the excessive use of packaging tape. Please refer to the Northern Territory border restrictions regarding the importation of organic materials.
Ensure the artwork includes a hanging system that is suitable for the size and weight of the artwork. Consider the safety and length of time the work will be hung in the exhibition
DELIVERY OF ARTWORK
The Finalists will be required to organise the delivery and collection of their artwork to MAGNT at their cost, including insurance and packing and freighting arrangements to a standard that ensures its safety.
The choice of freighting company is at the discretion of the Finalist and should be fully investigated prior to booking the transport to ensure it is appropriate for the particular artwork. Please remember that Darwin has a sub-tropical climate. Temperatures and humidity can be extreme and damaging to artworks if they are left exposed to outside elements for any length of time.
The artworks should be packaged or crated in a way, and with materials that can be reused for the return of the artwork. Should an artwork require any special packaging or additional crating for its return at the end of the exhibition, MAGNT will soft-pack the artwork in the original packaging to ensure its safety and have it available for collection by a local crate maker nominated by the Finalist. This will be done at the Finalist’s direction and expense.
The artworks must arrive framed, strapped or stretched with the necessary hanging or installation systems attached, ready to hang or install. Artists need to be able to provide any specialised equipment if it is beyond what the Museum has in stock and detailed instructions on how to use the necessary software or hardware.
If artworks are transported, rolled and then framed by Darwin based framers, please instruct the framer to include the necessary attachments or hanging systems. The artwork may be excluded from the exhibition if it does not meet these requirements and will be returned to the entrant at their expense.
Any special instructions needed to hang or install the artwork must be provided.
Please indicate the preferred way in which the artwork is to be installed by indicating the correct way up by writing “TOP” on the back of the artwork.
Where an artwork is made up of a number of pieces please identify each piece by including a plan or a numbering system.
Upon arrival, all works will be treated and condition checked by MAGNT staff. Any damage will be communicated with the Finalist as soon as possible after the work arrives at MAGNT.
Each Finalist’s Artwork will be photographed by MAGNT for the exhibition catalogue and media collateral. The Artworks will be held in MAGNT secure storage until ready to be installed in the gallery for the 2023 Telstra NATSIAA exhibition.
COLLECTION OF ARTWORK
In the final months of the exhibition MAGNT will communicate with the Finalist via the email address supplied in the online entry form requesting details for the dispatch of the Artwork. MAGNT will forward a Dispatch Form that needs to be completed within a strict deadline with information regarding the destination of the Artwork.
MAGNT reserves the right to dispose of any artwork that is left unclaimed for six months after the exhibition closes.
Artworks will be covered by MAGNT from the date they arrive in the building until the date they are dispatched. The insurance of Artworks whilst in transit is the responsibility of the Artist or their nominated Agent.
In the case of the Artwork being sold, insurance becomes the responsibility of the new owner from the time the Artwork leaves MAGNT.
EXHIBITING THE ARTWORK
The exhibition of the selected Finalists’ Artworks will be presented on Larrakia Country, at MAGNT from 22 July 2023 - 14 January 2024. The Finalists’ Artworks are installed for the judging panel to see the works in the gallery.
The Consignment Period of the Artwork is from the date the Artwork is delivered at MAGNT between the dates set out in Key Dates to the last day for dispatch of the Artwork again set out in Key Dates.
MAGNT will launch and display the exhibition as per the dates set out in Key Dates
MAGNT may at any time, acting reasonably and upon giving notice to the Artist or their nominated Agent, cancel the Exhibition or shorten or extend the length of the Exhibition or alter the opening and/or closing dates of the Exhibition.
Judging of the exhibition will take place from 17-19 July 2023 and the Award recipients will be notified under embargo by Saturday, 22 July 2023. MAGNT will telephone the Award recipients and follow up with written confirmation via the Primary Email address supplied in the online entry form.
The Award recipients will be made public for the first time as part of the Awards Ceremony on Friday, 11 August 2023. Award recipients will receive their Awards as part of the Awards Ceremony and will be invited to respond with a few words. Award recipients will also be asked to pre-record a brief video segment for promotional purposes prior to the Awards Ceremony.
To learn more about previous years, visit www.magnt.net.au/natsiaa
Judging is the final process that takes place in the gallery in the weeks leading up to the Awards Ceremony. The judging panel comprises three Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with knowledge and experience of contemporary visual arts and are independent from MAGNT. These judges are appointed on an annual basis. The judges consider the artworks entered into each category and read through the information and extended artist’s statements supporting their artwork and art practice.
The Award recipients will be notified on or shortly after the final day of judging. MAGNT will take immediate steps to make suitable transportation and accommodation arrangements for the Award recipients to travel to Darwin and attend the Artist Welcome, Awards Ceremony and associated events including Artist Talks. The judges' decisions are final and no correspondence will be entered into.
In the event of further COVID-19 disruptions these procedures are subject to change.
Telstra NATSIAA is a non-acquisitive Award.
MAGNT must be granted the first right to acquire the Artwork at the price listed in the submission. MAGNT will advise the Artist if they are to acquire the Artwork by Thursday, 10 August 2023.
It is important to consider the full cost of the Artwork inclusive of framing, stretching, strapping and the freight costs to and from MAGNT. MAGNT will request a Tax Invoice and payment will be made within 30 days upon receipt of a Tax Invoice.
All Artworks entered into the Awards must be available for acquisition, and not pre-sold prior to the Awards Ceremony on Friday, 11 August 2023. If the Artwork is not acquired by MAGNT it will be available for public purchase from Friday, 11 August 2023. Negotiation of Artwork sales is between the Artist or their agreed Agent and the potential buyer. To facilitate this the Artist’s or their agreed Agent’s website will be listed in the exhibition publication and on the virtual gallery website.
Please carefully consider the sale price as it will not be possible to alter the price after close of entries on Friday, 17 March 2023.
AWARDS CEREMONY AND EVENTS
The winners of the 2023 Telstra NATSIAA will be announced on Friday, 11 August 2023 at MAGNT.
All Finalists and their guests are invited to travel to Darwin and attend the Artist Welcome, Award Ceremony and associated events including Artist Talks. Award recipients' travel and accommodation in Darwin will be supported by MAGNT through the reimbursement of travel expenses up to the value of $2,000. Reimbursement will be paid upon receiving the associated tax invoices. MAGNT will supply cab charges to cover travel to and from airports, accommodation, and Telstra NATSIAA events at MAGNT.
MORAL RIGHTS, INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND ICIP
MAGNT (and its principal partner Telstra and Other Parties) will always attribute the Artist as the author of the Artwork. Where MAGNT has reason to believe the information provided in the Entry Form is incorrect or no longer the correct way to refer to an Artist, MAGNT will consult with the Artist or their Agent regarding the correct details.
MAGNT (and its principal partner Telstra and Other Parties) will respect the Artist’s moral right of integrity and will reproduce the Artwork in full and without any changes except for reproducing less than the full Artwork where space is limited or where MAGNT has sought prior approval in writing from the Artist or their nominated Agent for the change.
All entrants retain copyright in their Artwork.
Finalists grant MAGNT as Telstra NATSIAA (and its principal partner Telstra and Other Parties) a fee-free, non-commercial, non-exclusive licence for 2 years to reproduce the submitted work in material form, to photograph, publish and/or communicate it to the public, for the following Telstra NATSIAA-related purposes: marketing, publicity, educational and publication uses for the 2023 Telstra NATSIAA, its exhibition, the exhibition publication (sold on a cost recovery basis only), virtual gallery, and associated Awards events, including but not limited to promotional posters and brochures, electronic/digital posts and live streaming, broadcasting and print media, and destination marketing. Where MAGNT shares images of Artworks with third parties for publicity and promotion of the Telstra NATSIAA exhibition it will provide full artist credit lines that acknowledge the Artist and their representing Agent and make it a condition of image supply that they be accompanied by the credit lines.
Non-commercial photography within the exhibition will be allowed unless specified by the Artist at the time of selection as a Finalist and the signing of their Artist Agreement. MAGNT will support this by adding a label beside any Artwork not to be photographed in the exhibition.
Finalists grant MAGNT as Telstra NATSIAA a perpetual licence for its archival purposes.
If an Artwork includes Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property (ICIP) MAGNT as Telstra NATSIAA (and its principal partner Telstra and Other Parties) will acknowledge the language group or community with an appropriate notice of custodial interest to be agreed with the Artist at the time of selection as a Finalist and the signing of their Artist Agreement.
If there is a dispute between the parties as to any matter arising out of this Agreement the parties may agree to the identity of an independent expert to determine the matter in dispute. In the event of a failure to agree within five Business Days of one party nominating an independent expert, then either or both of the parties may refer the matter to the President for the time being of the Law Society of the Northern Territory who is to nominate an independent expert to determine the matter in dispute.
The decision of the independent expert is absolute and final and binds the parties accordingly and this Agreement is deemed to be amended to incorporate the terms of the independent expert’s decision.
The independent expert is deemed to be acting in making any decision as an expert and not an arbitrator.
The parties are to bear the costs of such a determination equally.
The parties must make available to the independent expert all materials requested by it and furnish it with all other materials which are relevant to the determination.
Artists found to be misrepresenting themselves or their Artwork in any way will be disqualified from the Awards.
Artists found to be involved in any conduct or activity which, in the opinion of MAGNT, harms or may harm the reputation or name of MAGNT or its sponsors, or which offends public sensibility, may be disqualified from entering Telstra NATSIAA.
MAGNT reserves the right to revoke the Awards and associated prize money from an Award Recipient subsequently found to be in breach of these conditions.
MAGNT reserves the right to negotiate with the Artist about display options for their Artwork.
Agent is the person the Artist has consented and selected to represent them in correspondence with MAGNT and Telstra. This may be an art centre, cultural centre, language centre, keeping place, or commercial gallery who represents the Artist.
Artist is the Aboriginal and/ or Torres Strait Islander Artist or Artists who have authored the Artwork submitted into Telstra NATSIAA.
Finalist is an artist whose work has been shortlisted by the Selection Panel to appear in the Telstra NATSIAA exhibition.
Artwork is the Artwork submitted by the Artist and/or their Agent in the Entry Form. The image or images of the artwork submitted must be of the final artwork and no further alterations are allowed to be made to any aspect of the artwork after the entry form is submitted. Indicative images or sketches of proposed artworks will not be considered. The Artist must be the primary maker of the Artwork.
Finalist is an Artist whose work has been shortlisted by the Selection Panel to appear in the Telstra NATSIAA exhibition.
ICIP is the abbreviation for ‘Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property’ and refers to the rights that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have to protect their arts and culture.
Other Parties are those parties MAGNT or Telstra contract to help deliver the Telstra NATSIAA exhibition and associated events including the Artists’ Welcome, Opening and Awards Ceremony and Media Preview
There are seven Award Categories in Telstra NATSIAA chosen by the judges and the Telstra People’s Choice Award which is a non-monetary Award chosen by popular vote. An Artist is eligible to win more than one of the Awards if so chosen by the judges, and the Artwork satisfies all Conditions of Entry and the below Award definitions.
Telstra Art Award is awarded to the artwork that has been judged by the Panel as the most outstanding and best overall from the Finalists that year. The recipient of this Award receives $100,000 (excl. GST).
Telstra General Painting Award is for a work made with any paint on any supporting medium. This includes paints such as natural pigments, watercolours, acrylic paints, and oil paints. The recipient of this Award receives $15,000 (excl. GST).
Telstra Bark Painting Award is for any work that uses bark as the supporting medium. The bark can be of any shape and size, and can be painted with natural and synthetic pigments as determined by the Artist. The recipient of this Award receives $15,000 (excl. GST).
Telstra Work on Paper Award is awarded to an outstanding artwork made with the medium of paper. Practices included in this category include photography, printmaking, painting, drawing and other practices that use paper as the primary supporting material. The recipient of this Award receives $15,000 (excl. GST).
Telstra Multimedia Award is an award for multidisciplinary works, digital works, video works, audio works, and installations. The recipient of this Award receives $15,000 (excl. GST).
Wandjuk Marika Memorial 3D Award (sponsored by Telstra) is the award named after renowned Yolŋu leader and artist Wandjuk Marika (1927-1987). This Award is given to the most outstanding three dimensional artwork. The three dimensional work can be in any medium. This includes artworks and sculptures made from wood, fabric, and recycled materials. The recipient of this Award receives $15,000 (excl. GST).
Telstra Emerging Artist Award is given to the best judged artwork by an artist working in any medium who is within their first 5 years of their art practice. The recipient of this Award receives $15,000 (excl. GST).
Telstra People's Choice Award is selected by public vote after the exhibition opens. Votes are cast by visitors who view the exhibition in person at MAGNT or virtually online. The recipient of this Award is publicly announced in the final weeks of the exhibition. The recipient of this Award receives an award trophy. There is no prize money attached to this Award.
Margaret Rarru Garrawurra, Dhomala (pandanus sail) 2022, pandanus, kurrajong, bush dyes, 278 x 245cm. Courtesy of the artist and Milingimbi Art and Culture. Image Mark Sherwood
Supported by the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory Governments.