Jessica Murtagh

Jessica Murtagh

    • Biography

      I am an Adelaide based emerging artist working with blown glass. I have recently completed a Master’s in Design (Contemporary Art) from the University of South Australia, and my practice is based out of JamFactory Contemporary Craft and Design. My arts practice leans heavily on illustration, using sandblasting and engraving techniques to create imagery and narratives on glass. I predominantly make vessels, both functional and sculptural, ranging from vibrant and dramatic to subdued. I draw inspiration from both the natural world, capturing in glass both the calm and destructive beauty of nature, as well as classical artefacts that are contrasted with contemporary themes.

      My narrative work is inspired by antiquities from past societies such as the ancient Athenians. Artefacts made of stone, ceramic, metal and glass give glimpses into the stories of their lives, from godly deeds to tableaus depicting everyday moments. These illustrations of the common, mundane scenes of ordinary people I find to be the most inspiring and have been very influential to my work. My fascination with history and ancient relics has led me to explore the idea of what future artefacts could be, and to question what our contemporary culture will one day leave behind.

      I have exhibited in numerous prizes and exhibitions around Australia. I was recently a finalist in the Woollhara Small Sculpture prize (NSW) and the Tom Malone Glass prize at the Art Gallery of Western Australia. In 2021 I was awarded Highly Commended in the Waterhouse Natural Science prize, and in 2019 I was awarded the Vicki Torr Emerging Artist Prize. My work is held in a number of private collections and was recently collected by the Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences (Powerhouse), the National Gallery of Victoria and the Parliament House Art Collection

    • Awards

      2022 Finalist, Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize, Sydney, NSW
      2022 Finalist, The Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize, SA Museum
      2022 Finalist, Tom Malone prize, Art Gallery of Western Australia
      2020 Highly Commended, The Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize, SA Museum
      2020 USASA Leadership Grant for Thomas Foundation Residency at Canberra Glassworks
      2020 Highly Commended, Wagga Wagga National Emerging Glass Prize, Wagga Wagga Art Gallery, NSW
      2020 Thomas Foundation Artist in Residence, Canberra Glassworks, ACT
      2020 National assistance program for the arts grant, Sidney Myer Fund & The Myer Foundation, Sydney
      2020 Finalist, MilanoVetro -35 prize, Sforza Castle – Museum of Decorative Arts, Milan, Italy
      2020 Finalist, Heysen Prize for landscape, Hahndorf Academy, SA
      2019 Winner, Vicki Torr Emerging Artist Art Prize, Ausglass,
      2020 Finalist, Tom Bass Figurative Sculpture Prize, Juniper Hall, Paddington, NSW
      2019 Finalist, Gallery M Contemporary Art Prize, Gallery M, SA
      2019 Finalist, Pro Hart Art Prize, Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery, Broken Hill, NSW
      2019 Carclew Project and Development grant to attend international glass conference in Whanganui, New Zealand

    • Website

    Showing the single artwork

    Jessica Murtagh

    Modern Relic VI – Waiting for better days
    47 x 25 x 25 cm glass, blown, sandblasted and engraved