The Susan Moorhead Memorial Award

The Susan Moorhead Memorial Award was established by Charles Sturt University Visual Arts Faculty in 2002 in memory of artist Susan Moorhead (1947-1990). When this campus was closed, the money was transferred to the former 'Friends of the Albury Regional Art Gallery' to be held in trust. moMAMA (formerly 'The Friends') remains the custodian of this trust fund.

This award serves to honour Susan Moorhead's life of commitment to the arts. During her short but distinguished professional life Susan was an art teacher, exhibiting artist, designer, sculptor and master crafts person.

Administered by moMAMA, the Susan Moorhead Memorial Award is a biennial award to assist a local and 'emerging' visual artist in the development and realisation of his/her professional career.

As of 2018, the Award became part of the MAMA Open Call program. The Open Call is an opportunity for artists from the local Murray Region to enter a competitive application process to be selected to present an exhibition at MAMA. From the successful candidates in the application process, a local, emerging artist is chosen to be the recipient of the Susan Moorhead Memorial Award.

The award defines an emerging artist as someone:

  • who has not been represented by a commercial dealer
  • who has not achieved independence through their work
  • who considers themselves an emerging artist, i.e., has a body of work ready for an exhibition, or has a body of work in development that will be ready for an exhibition.

The award defines a local artist as someone who lives and works within MAMA's catchment area, including:

  • Local Government Area's (LGA's) of Albury, Balranald, Berrigan, Conargo, Corowa, Deniliquin, Greater Hume, Jerilderie, Murray, Urana, Wakool and Wentworth in New South Wales and Indigo, Towong and Wodonga in Victoria.

There is no age limit for entrants in the award.

The award grants the winner a $2,000 cash prize, a solo exhibition at MAMA within 18 months.

As per MAMA's Ethics Policy, those engaged in a committee position in an advisory support group, including moMAMA and the MAMA Art Foundation, and those receiving their primary income from AlburyCity are not eligible to enter.

The judging panel comprises the MAMA Curator or Director, the moMAMA President, and a moMAMA Committee member.

Judges acknowledge the importance of supporting emerging talent as they represent the next generation, or movement, in contemporary art.  In judging this award, they look for conceptual intelligence and original thinking, relevance to the current time and a degree of professionalism in the execution of the work.

Read more about recent Susan Moorhead Memorial Award Acquisitions