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The second Girt By Sea Sculpture Prize is to be significantly bigger and better than the first, which has only just concluded.

Event organisers Steve Morgan and Bob Turner were thrilled with the outcome, with a thumbs up from sculptors, judges and the arts community.

" We are very proud to be part of such an event that has captured the imagination of council, public and arts community alike. The next 4 Islands Festival is just around the corner now and to have "Girt by Sea" as a stand alone exhibition is very exciting."Steve Morgan said.

Cr Mark Edwards, who has secured funding for the prized annual event, has been adding considerably more for the sculpture prize.

The first, held just recently on June 4 , offered a $35,000 cumulative prize and attracted about 2 5 entries.

The second Girt By Sea Sculpture Prize will be held in conjunction with the 2nd annual 4 Islands Festival to be held from August 27 to September 4.

The two sculpture events were held in close unison because of funding deadlines.

The first had to be held before the end of the 2016 financial year to ensure the sculpture prize remains an ongoing event.

This next event, however, will attract increased prize money to the value of a stunning $55,000.

“In response from the artists, community and the quality of the art works acquired, I decided to add an additional $20,000 to the acquisition prize money from the first Girt by sea Sculpture Exhibition.”

The councillor says that interest from the artistic community has grown considerably since the June event.

“Sculpture artists across Australia have realised what is being offered here.

“To my knowledge it is Australia’s richest annual acquisition sculpture prize,” he said with some pride.

The investment by council is a shrewd one.

This next Girt by Sea event will offer a $20,000 acquisition as a major prize as well as five $7000 acquisition prizes.

“All of these will be acquisitive prizes which means council gets to retain the artworks.

“These will be used as major pieces to be place in around the Bay Islands and Redland Bay,” Cr Edwards said.

The People’s Choice Award of $3000 will be non acquisitive which should attract works over the value of the prize money.

The Girt by Sea Sculpture Prize is exclusive to Division 5 of Council.

“My goal is to build on the reputation of the islands and Redland Bay as a true artistic community.

“The now $55,000 prize money gives the arts in Division 5 real gravitas,” he said.

Winners of the June " Girt by Sea " $7000 prizes were totally excited about their wins and had plenty of praise for the initiative of the event.

They included two local artists, Darren Goleby and his ‘The Viking and the Banjo Player’ and Rodney Hammond of Russell Island with his Fishes themed sculpture, ‘Aquatica’.

Other winners were Antone Bruinsma’s ‘Island Girl’, Giuseppe Filardo with ‘I See’ and Greg Windsor’s ‘Tinnie Sculpture’

All of these works will eventually be placed throughout Redland Bay and the Bay Islands.

“I hope to have in place an Arts Tour and Walk that will lead visitors from one artistic piece to another,” Cr Edwards said.

The initial Girt by Sea was judged by well known Macleay artist Maddi Ekeblad and artist and retired university arts lecturer Wayne Edwards.

Even more images of the sculptures can be found at

• The winners to with Cr Mark Edwards and judge Maddi Ekeblad.

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