A work that explores the manufacture of a perfect silicon sphere has won the 2020 National Photography Prize.
Murray Art Museum Albury announced on Sunday night Sydney artist Debra Phillips received the $30,000 acquisitive first prize for her entry The Good. The Just. The Beautiful.
Photographer Hayley Millar-Baker took out the $5000 John and Margaret Baker Memorial Fellowship for an emerging practitioner with A Series of Unwarranted Events, 2018.
Phillips' project arose from a visit to the National Metrology Institute of Germany, capturing objects associated with the sphere's production, such as a glass ring used in the polishing process.
Prize judge Elias Redstone said The Good. The Just. The Beautiful. was "incredibly compelling".
"This is a beautiful study of understanding how we come to control the world through measurements and how that can be visualised in a photographic project," he said.
MAMA director Bree Pickering said the series exemplified Phillips' technical precision and conceptual depth.
"She is an extraordinary artist and we are thrilled to acquire these works into the MAMA collection," Pickering said.
IN OTHER NEWS:
The National Photography Prize is a biennial prize supported by the MAMA Art Foundation and is the oldest acquisitive photography prize in Australia.
This year's selection panel included Isobel Parker Philip, senior curator contemporary Australian art at Art Gallery of NSW, Michael Moran MAMA curator and Amanda Williams, recipient of the National Photography Prize 2018.
The work of all 12 finalists has been exhibited physically at MAMA since February 21 and online during the pandemic closure.
The exhibition dates have been extended to Sunday June 14, with MAMA reopening on Monday, June 1.