Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing Feature Artist - Nicholas Plowman

Nicholas Plowman, Melbourne
- Drawing, it’s my second language.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your work
I have always drawn, ever since I could hold a pencil my Mum says. But it probably wasn’t until I went to TAFE after high school that it occurred to me that I wanted to be an artist, a painter. I then studied at USQ under Charlie Boyle (Painting) and Alan Bruce (Drawing) and things stepped up another notch. However, it was when I returned from Mexico (after visiting Frida Khalo’s studio) that I really chased the autobiographical in my work; this I see now as the first time I actually made “real’ work about my life and my own existence.
Throughout all of this, drawing has always been the base of my practice. I ran life drawing sessions at Jugglers Art Space for six year before moving to Melbourne; here I do life drawing twice a week, it underpins my practice and keeps my eye fit and my hand experimenting.

*How would you compare the traditional practice of drawing to the digital approach? *
I wouldn’t, I mean by saying that, that I can’t compare them because I have no experience with the digital approach. My only concern would be for losing the ability to understanding the subject by drawing it, studying it, looking at it. Drawing for me is still most important skill to any artist, it seeks answers and attempts to describe. I think most artists are very inquisitive and drawing seems the first logical step to understanding something.

*How do you feel the practice of drawing evolved over the past 10 years? *
Well, it’s both evolved and devolved. A lot of art schools got rid of drawing for a while, so a lot of graduates were coming out of uni with five or six drawings under their arms; whereas we did life drawing and general drawing twice a week at uni, so that’s four three hour drawing classes every week in second year. The only way to “get good” is to devote time and energy toward it – like anything else in this world. Saying this, I’m all for using technology and exploring digital mark making, but for me there is nothing like walking up close to an image and seeing marks, seeing where the artist’s hand has been. There is nowhere to hide with drawing, it’s all out there for all to see.

*Why are competitions like the Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing important within Australian Arts culture? *
Because it promotes, fosters and encourages drawing. With the changing of the Dobell Drawing Prize to invite only, Australia and its artists (and the public) have lost a great prize for many reasons, it still exists but no longer can any artist have a go. I think the public engage with drawings a lot more than other forms of art, because everyone has used a pencil, biro, crayon etc. People can understand the marks, but still be fascinated and invigorated by the outcomes.

*Why is the practice of drawing important to you? *
It’s my second language. It allows me to investigate and understand the world and my experiences within it, and to inevitably re-describe; and because there is no place to hide, it is at once exposing and exhilarating.

Read more about Nic Plowman at
Read more about the Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing here

Jugglers 17/04/15

New Loyalty Cards - A Jugglers & Crush City Collaboration

The new loyalty discount card will allow card holders to purchase Sugar aerosol at a discounted rate of $6.25 each from Crush City, which is more than 25% off the retail price. Additional benefits include free NY fatcaps, and if required for other external projects Jugglers discounted pricing applies to Ironlak at a price of $6.50each or MTN 94 at $8.00each.

V.I.P. loyalty card is only collectible at Jugglers Art Space and paint from Crush City –
Give Jugglers a call or come by the space during the week to collect your new card!

Jugglers 03/04/15

Sha Sarwari - Silent Conversation

Sha Sarwari – Silent Conversation
Exhibition Opening Night Friday the 10th of April – 6pm to 9pm
Sha’s experiential work explores notions of peace and freedom whilst commenting on socially and politically relevant themes such as asylum seekers and refugees in Australia.

For more information about Sha Sarwari please visit:

Jugglers 01/04/15

2015 Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing - Entries Open!

Winner of the 2014 Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing, Carolyn Mckenzie-Craig, The Truth About Mirrors, 2014

Entries Open Next Week! March 2, 2015

Entries open for the 2015 Marie Ellis OAM Prize for Drawing on March 2, and close on June 8, 2015.

Major Prize Winner is awarded $4000 in acquisitive prizes
Honorable Mention is awarded to the value of $500
People’s Choice Award is awarded to the value of $500

For all conditions of entry and terms and conditions please click the Marie Ellis tab on the right.

Thank you to everyone who was involved in 2014, it was a huge success and we look forward to reviewing this year’s applicants!

Remember to follow the Jugglers Art Space Instagram and Facebook to stay up to date with current Marie Ellis news and read about our featured artists.

- Holly Riding

Jugglers 27/02/15

White Silence

White Silence is an ongoing group exercise at Jugglers where invited artists collaborate on an interpretive response to a controlled environment of selected music and silence, usually in one of the Jugglers exhibition spaces. This is done without any verbal communication between participants. The idea is borrowed from the mystics across a range of spiritual traditions in an attempt to also create a crucible for possible moments of inexplicable presence, new understandings and epiphany. We encourage the use of these videos for private reflection and contemplation.

Jugglers 12/02/15

Upcoming Exhibitions Awarded to Southbank Tafe Graduates

Jugglers Art Space is proud to be hosting two free exhibitions in February awarded to six outstanding fine art students at their graduation shows last year as part of an ongoing parternship between Jugglers Art Space Inc & Southbank Tafe.

Capturing the Spirit…

Opening Night Event: Friday 20th February 2015 from 6-9pm

Three award winning visual art graduates from TAFE Queensland, Brisbane, Alex Freitas, Jane McGeough and Felicity Scarce, step out of the nest to present their first exhibition in Brisbane. Bringing together three very different styles and mediums, painting, sculpture and video installation, the works weave a sense of capturing the spirit – of a moment, a person or through a ritual. In abstract drawings and quirky wood sculptures Alex tries to capture simple moments of his life. In bold, fresh and colourful portraits of local Brisbane activists Jane seeks to capture the vision and the spirit of the person. Felicity’s practice is an exploration of and experiment in spirituality, the idea of everyday magic and ritual.

On Air

Opening Night Event: Friday 27th February 2015 from 6-9pm

Artists Jordan Harris, Tanya Borg and Michelle Eskola present On Air: An exploration of digital spaces through traditional media, at Jugglers Art Space.
Digital imagery and portable electronic devices have generated an endless drift of visual information. ‘On Air’ responds to the rise of selfies, non-moments and instagram filters through painting, drawing and photography. These online impressions are suspended in real space to find new meanings, perspectives and formations.

Jugglers 10/02/15

Street Art Jam at Jugglers Art Space Inc Saturday January 31 and Sunday February 1, 2015

Witness the first marks made by members of our nation’s first people on Saturday January 31 and Sunday February 1 at Jugglers Art Space Inc!

Presented in partnership with Creative Inclusive, Indigenous street artist Libby Harward will lead a team of local creatives to christen the new wall rebuilt in Jugglers’ Fortitude Valley courtyard after it was destroyed during the Brisbane superstorm late last year.

Courtyard open to viewing the live art process from 12pm to 5pm, Saturday January 31 and Sunday February 1.

Jugglers 29/01/15

WAAX - Wisdom Teeth

Checkout this new music video from WAAX! It was filmed right here at Jugglers Art Space.
Credits: Director / Motion Control / Visuals Animation / Editor / Post-production by Jaymis:
Graphic Design: Marie DeVita

Jugglers 10/12/14


31ST OCTOBER TO 9TH NOVEMBER 2014 THE SHED: 257 Macarthur Ave, Hamilton

An exhibition of artworks by artists-in-residence and special guests. Inspired by the Brisbane River at The Shed.
Artists Include: Joanna Bone, Peter Breen, Mel Davis, Joel Glazebrook, Paul Harris, Kay Lawrence, Matt Lockwood, Zoe Mary, Joy McDonald, Aaron Micallef, Rose Moxham, Jessica Row, Sha Sarwari, Vanessa Stanley, James Watts

Open Fridays from 6-9pm and Saturdays / Sundays from 9am-5pm.
Plus special events:

  • Friday 31st October: Opening Night Event 6-9pm
  • Sunday 2nd November: Life Drawing 5-7pm. $15 adult / $12 concession. Please pre-register by calling 07 3252 2552
  • Saturday 8th November: White Silence Live Art Performance 5-8pm
  • Sunday 9th November: Artist Talk 2-4pm

For more information visit: or or call 07 3252 2552

Jugglers 28/10/14

#G20Cultural Pillars Street Art Project

Jugglers is proud to have been invited to be the contract arts organisation by the Queensland Government for the #G20Cultural Pillars Street Art Project at Southbank [Brisbane]. Working with the local aboriginal community and elders, we have engaged artists Libby, Warraba, Guido van Helten [image above] Gus Eagleton, Fintan Magee, Mik Shida, Simon De Groot and Johnny Beer.

Jugglers 24/10/14