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Student’s artwork to feature at GOMA

St Mary’s Principal Judith Finan congratulates student Kianah Davis on her
winning artwork

A DREAM to have a painting displayed at The Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA) has come true for one St Mary’s College, Ipswich, student.

Kianah Davis was recently announced as an Excellence Award winner in the 2018 Creative Generation Excellence Award in Visual Art.

Her painting will join the high calibre of artwork that entices thousands to visit the gallery each year.

Receiving the honour was an exceptional achievement for the 17-year-old, with only 38 student works being selected from 447 submissions from state and non-state schools across Queensland.

St Mary’s Cultural Team Leader Emelia Franz said she was thrilled to learn that Kianah’s artwork had been selected when she received the wonderful news from Minister for Education and Minister for Industrial Relations Grace Grace.

“Kianah worked very hard on her piece which is a true reflection of her artistic talent,” Mrs Franz said.

In her commendation of Kianah’s artwork, Ms Grace said it “optimises the program’s objectives”.

“Her work displayed a degree of sophistication in concepts, diversity of technical competence, and a high standard of visual art education in Queensland secondary schools,” Ms Grace said. 

Kianah, who was of Gumbaynggirr and Bundjalung descent, said she felt art created and connected us to our culture. 

“This piece represents my connection to my Aboriginal heritage and country which creates a sense of place,” Kianah said. 

“The tree is my connection to the land and the footsteps represent my ancestors who walked the land before me.

“Through their guidance and wisdom my journey begins.

“The circles represent the ring of river stones from which my family conduct smoking ceremony’s.

“Through this ceremony we discard the bad energy and cleanse our minds, body and spirit to be renewed for the future,” she said.

Kianah’s mother Charmaine Davis said the creative talent ran in the family.

Ms Davis  said to make winning the award extra special, Kianah’s sister also was a winner in previous years.

“We look forward to visiting GOMA and we feel so proud of her artwork,” she said.   

 Kianah’s artwork will be on display at the art gallery in 2019.


Brisbane Catholic Education Office

243 Gladstone Road, Dutton Park Q 4102

GPO Box 1201 Brisbane 4001 Australia

Phone: (07) 3033 7000

Fax: (07) 3844 5101