The winners of the highly anticipated Parkes Waste to Art Exhibition and Competition have been announced. A strong field of artists entered the community competition which was open to residents of the Parkes Shire.

The Exhibition showcases creative works made from reused & recyclable waste materials with the aim to challenge peoples’ perceptions about ‘rubbish’ and to celebrate the reuse and recycling of waste through arts and crafts.

Waste to Art provides an innovative approach to waste education, inviting individuals, schools and community groups to take up the challenge and create a new life for materials that would otherwise have been thrown away or considered useless: bottle tops, plastic bags, parts from rusty farm machinery, old horse shoes, buttons, and the list goes on. Instead of ending up in landfill these waste materials can be turned into fantastic works of art.

A specific waste item is featured as part of Waste to Art each year in an attempt to highlight problem issues, and 2021 was the 'Year of Aluminium and Steel Cans'.

Manager Cultural, Education & Library Services Kerryn Jones said, "This year's competition gave aspiring and professional artists the chance to explore and share their waste reduction message. It also provided a wonderful opportunity for the entire Parkes Shire community to showcase their creativity.

"There were 47 entries this year across 16 categories, with six pieces of work being sold."

Late last month, Parkes Shire Deputy Mayor Cr Barbara Newton opened the exhibition and announced the winners of each category, alongside the Parkes Shire Mayor Cr Ken Keith OAM and Councillor's Bill Jayet and Neil Westcott.

The winners of the following categories are:

  • Building Sculpture 2D - Barugil by Middleton Public School
  • Building Sculpture 3D - Chook RV by Rex Veal
  • Community 2D - Alice's Garden by the Ballantyne Family
  • Community 3D - Patio Flowers by Meredith Barber
  • Community Functional - Shower of Enlightenment by Ian Rowe
  • Open 2D - My Old Cot Quilt by Elsie Mahon
  • Open 3D - Bloody Linen Dress by Helen Standen
  • Open Functional - Scrap Bin Lamp by Deb Jones
  • High School 3D - Jeff by Blake McMahon
  • High School Functional - Time in Chain by TCS School to Work
  • Primary 2D - Rainbow Magazine by Amarni Reidy
  • Primary 3D - Viking Ship by Elijah Cole
  • Primary Functional - Fruitilicious by Kelsey Finnegan
  • Special Category: Scrap Metal - Bloody Linen Dress by Helen Standen
  • Yearly Theme: Aluminium Cans - Patio Flowers by Meredith Barber
  • People's Choice - Cluster by Harrison Grady

There were also a number of Highly Commended awards given, and a few special mentions. The exhibition was open for four weeks in the Coventry Room of the Parkes Library & Cultural Centre, attracting a total of 380 visitors.

"Thank you to all involved for a truly wonderful exhibition, and congratulations to those moving on to the regional exhibition and competition at the Outback Arts Centre in Coonamble, which opens late July.

"We are pleased to announce that the Waste to Art theme for 2022 is Soft Plastics. We look forward to seeing the amazing work entered in next year's exhibition and competition," added Ms Jones.