Winner of The Gold Award 2024 announced

Published on 08 July 2024

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The Gold Award 2024 winner announced

The winner of Rockhampton Museum of Art’s (RMOA) 2024 Gold Award has been announced. It is Cairns / Gimuy based artist Rosella Namok for her work Old Gals Yarnin’ I-III.

The winning piece was chosen from 26 artworks, submitted by eight of the best artists working in Australia today. This year’s judge was Godwin Bradbeer, an internationally recognised visual artist with more than 50 solo exhibitions to his credit in Australia and overseas.

The biennial Gold Award, which began in 2012, is the richest painting prize in Queensland named for a generous bequest of the late Rockhampton philanthropist, Moya Gold. Her bequest funded an invitational award to acquire contemporary Australian paintings. The most outstanding work is awarded a cash prize of $50,000 and the artwork is acquired to the Rockhampton Museum of Art collection.

The Gold Award is a joint initiative of Rockhampton Museum of Art, Rockhampton Museum of Art Philanthropy and Rockhampton Regional Council.

Namok expresses her Aangkum People’s traditional lore through bold, contemporary designs.

Guest Judge Godwin Bradbeer said: "Rosella's paintings possess a commanding power and grandeur. I suspect that they strike out at a tangent from her inherited traditions. Nonetheless they are a potent acknowledgement of specific place and landscape rendered anew within her finger line technique as palpable, tactile and most evidently monumental. These works have a presence that overrides the convention of descriptive image making".

Rockhampton Mayor Tony Williams said that The Gold Award is one of the most eagerly awaited events on the region’s arts calendar.

“Many of Rockhampton Museum of Art’s most prized works have been acquired through The Gold Award, made possible through the generous bequest of Moya Gold, he said.

“That means that The Gold Award helps to build on our city’s art collection and continues to make our collection the envy of many regional galleries.

“All 26 artworks entered into the competition will be on display at RMOA until September, and I urge people to come and have a look,” he said.

In addition to the acquisition of the winning artwork, RMOA’s collection will be boosted by the purchase of more pieces from The Gold Award 2024 thanks to the generosity of the 2024 Gold Patrons.

“The 2024 Gold Patrons comprises of 18 benefactors whose important and significant financial contribution enables the RMOA Collection to grow for future generations,” Mayor Williams said.

A decision on these purchases will be made later in the year.

The Gold Award 2024 exhibition will be on display to the public at Rockhampton Museum of Art from 7 July to 8 September. Entry is free.

Rockhampton Museum of Art is owned and operated by Rockhampton Regional Council.


2024 Gold Award Artists

Winner: Rosella Namok

Patricia Hoffe 
John Honeywill
Tjungkara Ken
Ryan Presley
Gareth Sansom
Louise Tuckwell

Aangkum (Ungkum) artist Rosella Namok is a key name in Lockhart River, the site of one of Queensland’s most important contemporary art movements. In the 1990s, the community’s five language and kinship groups came together to collaborate and develop a distinct arts practice; a group of artists who came to be known as the Lockhart River Art Gang. Namok and her peers’ art practices sustain traditional cultural knowledge and expressions of Country through bold colours and innovative techniques that were new to the community. For over two decades, Namok has been technically and thematically developing her practice across painting, printmaking, and more recently sculpture.

According to the artist, sand painting was essential to her grandmother’s storytelling. Namok’s signature ‘finger line’ drawing style creates patterned, linear arrangements by pulling her fingers through a layer of fresh paint to reveal other colours below; a method that resembles the sand drawing practiced by her Elders.

The vibrant colours, sitting just underneath the dark surface of Old Gals Yarnin’ I-III express the tropical intensities of her Country.


Godwin Bradbeer is a visual artist with a reputation for intense and large scale figurative imagery. Despite substantial experience as a photographer and a painter his most definitive practice is most frequently in various modes of drawing. Bradbeer has had over 50 solo exhibitions in a career beginning in the seventies. His work is included within the collections of the Australian National Gallery, the National Gallery of Victoria, The Art Gallery of N.S.W., the Art Gallery of South Australia, Parliament House, Canberra, the Archive of Humanist Art, Commonwealth Art Bank, Lim lip Museum, Korea, Korean Art Institute, the University of Western Carolina, U.S.A. and other institutional collections nationally and internationally.

(L to R) Chair of RMOA Philanthropy Dr Leonie Gray, Cr Grant Mathers, Cr Cherie Rutherford, Gold Award Winner Rosella Namok, Mayor Tony Williams, Cr Edward Oram, judge Godwin Bradbeer, RMOA Director Jonathan McBurnie.