West Coast Artist Commission

Joh Osborne image

Commission Artist 2019 — Joh Osborne

The Unconformity is pleased to announce that West Coast artist and painter, Joh Osborne, has been awarded the $5,000 acquisitive West Coast Artist Commission for 2019.

Joh’s application was independently assessed by a panel comprising West Coast representatives and leaders from the Tasmanian visual art sector. Artistic Director of The Unconformity, Travis Tiddy, said that the panel was delighted to support Joh as the second recipient of the commission amongst a field of high calibre applicants.

“The panel really responded to the expressionist nature of Joh’s paintings that explore the human psyche and wild elements of the West Coast environment. Joh’s paintings depict the West Coast in an exuberant, unfettered way; they twist perceptions and don’t conform to formal ways of picturing landscapes. The panel loved the idea of supporting Joh to create a new work through this commission.”

Joh will create a new acrylic painting about landscape, memory and loss, focused on the ghost of the Tasmanian Thylacine and expressed in her own unique style. The finished work will be the second piece acquired through the commission, available exclusively for West Coast artists, following the inaugural recipient Chris Wilson in 2018.

Joh is a well-known part of the contemporary arts and cultural scene on the West Coast, having administered the oldest and longest working commercial art gallery in Queenstown, Art Frontier Gallery. The commission precedes a possible exhibition of a new work series in Melbourne through Q-Bank Gallery at some stage in the future.


Through the support of Arts Tasmania, in 2018, 2019 and 2020 The Unconformity is offering an annual $5000 acquisitive commission for a West Coast artist or artist collaboration. The commission is open to 2D art works including painting, works on paper, prints or photography, with works displaying a conceptual connection to the West Coast, and being of a new and significant work for the artist or artist collaboration.

Proposals are independently assessed by a panel representing West Coast people from across the region representing different art forms and cultural experiences, along with industry representatives from the visual art sector.

How to Apply

Applications for the 2019 commission are now closed. Dates for the 2020 commission will be announced in February 2020. For reference, the 2019 Info Sheet and Proposal Form can be downloaded here.


If you have any questions on the proposal form, commission details, eligibility or support material, please contact us by emailing info@theunconformity.com.au.

Previous Recipients

In 2018, West Coast Artist Chris Wilson, who specialises in pastels, was awarded the prestigious West Coast Artist Commission after being chosen amongst a highly-competitive field of applicants.

Chris first came to live on the West Coast in 1976, and is well-known for her bespoke gypsy carvan that has over the years resided across the region. Now based in Queenstown, Chris’s interest and artistic focus has shifted from rainforest and coastal environments to the immense, raw ‘geoscapes’ in the local area.

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Chris’s work is the first dedicated commission created through the West Coast Artist Commission that will accumulate to build a local collection for the West Coast representing the artists and arts practitioners of the region. The commissions will be installed within public buildings around the region.


The West Coast Artist Commission is supported through Arts Tasmania by the Minister for the Arts.

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