On the bookshelf IV with prop XV, France (revisited)

Nicola Mason

Oil on acrylic on canvas / 30 x 30 cm

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Nicola Mason


Nicola Mason is a visual artist who primarily utilises painting and drawing in her art practice. She lives and works in regional mainland Australia in Wiradjuri Country. In the middle of 2016, she resigned from her employment position in the conservation and land management sector to focus on her art practice and to commence studies in the painting workshop at the Australian National University. Nicola has been listed on the Dean’s List for Academic Excellence her 2019 Honours Year at the University of New South Wales Art & Design. As part of her Honours studies she undertook an Australian Consortium for In-Country Indonesian Studies (ACICIS) internship / residency at Babaran Segaragunung Culture House in Yogyakarta, Indonesia in 2020.
Nicola’s art practice has been propelled by several other residencies including her 2019 Bundanon Artist in Residence program through Bundanon Trust.
Nicola has created bodies of work for eight solo exhibitions, participated in three two person exhibitions and numerous group exhibitions since her first solo exhibition, WILD in Cowra Regional Art Gallery in 2016. This exhibition followed winning the 2015 Central West Regional Art Award, through Cowra Regional Art Gallery. Her work has been selected for numerous national art exhibitions and prizes including both the S. H. Ervin 2023 and 2021 Salon des refusés (alternate Archibald portrait and 2021 Wynne landscape) exhibition. In 2020 her work was Highly Commended in the National Adelaide Perry Prize for Drawing.
In conjunction with her arts practice, Nicola has been a director of an artist-run-initiative, Tableland’s Artist’s Cooperative Gallery 2014-17. She is currently employed as an arts worker with a regional arts board, Arts OutWest.

Artists Statement:

My every-day is reflected in my work where domestic scenes intersect with ecological themes.
My art practice is richly informed by my background in conservation and land management and my regionally based domestic life with family and creatures including Nim and Mr Barry Fox, my four-legged friends. I value working within interdisciplinary projects that cross the science and art disciplines such as the Art of Threatened Species project, a collaboration between Orana Arts and the Office of Environment and Heritage.
Through this project my process included heading out into the field with specialists working in a threatened brush-tailed rock-wallaby population site and going behind the scenes at the Australian Museum. My fine art studies at both the University of New South Wales and the Australian National University saw me focusing on still life. I investigated how still life could be used within a painting practice to express contemporary ecological themes. I am interested in the possibilities of enticing new ways of thinking through connection and engagement with art.
I value living and working in regional Australia in Wiradjuri Country. Artist residencies are additionally appreciated, where I connect with people and places adding new ideas and ways of working to my art practice.


Selected Education
2020 Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours), University of New South Wales, NSW (2019 Deans list recipient)
2017 Post Graduate Certificate of Art (Painting Workshop), Australian National University, ACT
1996 Bachelor of Science (Land and Resource Management), Macquarie University, NSW
Selected solo and two-person exhibitions
2023 Happenings, Michael Reid Murrurundi, Murrurundi, NSW (solo exhibition)
2022 From France to Here, Project Gallery 90, Sydney, NSW (solo exhibition)
2021 Paintings within Paintings, Project Gallery 90, Sydney, NSW (solo exhibition)
2020 Still Home with Alison Mackay, Project Gallery 90, Sydney, NSW
2019 Still and Within with Alison Mackay, Project Gallery 90, Sydney, NSW
2018 Résidence, A K Bellinger Gallery, Inverell, NSW (solo exhibition)
2018 BALANCE, CSIRO Discovery Centre with Gallery of Small Things, Canberra, ACT (solo exhibition)
2017 STILL, Tablelands Artists Cooperative Gallery, Bathurst, NSW (solo exhibition)
2017 An Unguarded Moment with Kiata Mason, A. K. Bellinger Gallery, Inverell, NSW
2016 WILD, Cowra Regional Art Gallery, Cowra, NSW (solo exhibition)
Selected awards and other recognition
2023 Commended: Unearthed 2023, Gulgong Arts Council, Gulgong NSW
2023 Selected: Salon des refusés (the alternate Archibald Prize), S. H. Ervin Gallery, NSW
2023 Finalist: Muswellbrook Art Prize, Muswellbrook Art Centre, Muswellbrook, NSW
2022 Winner: 2D Section Federation Art Prize, Corowa, NSW
2022 Finalist: Paddington Art Prize, Definance Gallery, Sydney, NSW
2022 Finalist: Basil Sellers Art Prize, Basil Sellers Art Centre, Moruya, NSW
2022 Finalist: Redland Art Awards, Redland Art Gallery, Cleveland, Qld
2021 Runner-up: Remagine Art Prize (painting), Wallarobba Arts and Cultural Centre, Hornsby, NSW
2021 Selected: Salon des refusés (the alternate Archibald and Wynne Prizes), S. H. Ervin Gallery, NSW
2021 Finalist: Nillumbik Prize for Contemporary Art, Montsalvat, VIC
2020 Highly Commended: Adelaide Perry Prize for Drawing, PLC Croydon, NSW
2018 Finalist: Macquarie Group Emerging Artist Prize, Macquarie Group Collection, NSW
2018 Finalist: The Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize, The South Australian Museum, SA
2016 Winner: Winmalee Artfest, Winmalee High School, NSW
2016 Highly Commended / People’s Choice Award: Blackheath Art Prize, Blackheath Art Society, NSW
2015 Winner: Central West Regional Art Award, Cowra Regional Art Gallery, NSW
Selected residencies/internships and grants
2023 Ironbark Residency at the Railway Hotel, Orana Art Inc and STAA, Stuart Town
2021 Create NSW, NSW Government Small Project Grant to support the development of new works for
Nic Mason, Cycle, 2022 at Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, NSW
2020 Australian Consortium for ‘In-Country’ Indonesian Studies (ACICIS) Creative Arts and Design
Professional Practicum as a student at University of New South Wales, with study at Universitas Sanata
Dharma and internship / residency at Babaran Segaragunung Culture House, Yogyakarta, Indonesia with
support from a New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant, Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade, 2019
2019 Bundanon Artist in Residence program, Bundanon Trust, NSW
2018/19 Art of Threatened Species residency, grant and exhibition with Orana Arts Inc; Department of
Planning, Industry and Environment; and Western Plains Cultural Centre, Dubbo, NSW
2017 Centre d’Art Marnay Art Centre (CAMAC) residency with a subvention from the Fondation Ténot,
Marnay-sur-Seine, France and a NSW Artist Grant from Create NSW through NAVA
Selected group exhibitions and community involvement
2022/23 Grey Foundations, WAYOUT Art Space, a Cementa Initiative, Kandos, NSW
2020 Invincible, Tremain’s Mill, Bathurst, NSW (including in-situ plein air public painting during the event)
2019 Art of Threatened Species, Western Plains Cultural Centre, Dubbo, NSW (including partaking in the
curator facilitated panel discussion)
2018 Movers and Shapers, Broadhurst Gallery, Hazelhurst Arts Centre, Gymea

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