Dots and details make big impression

INSPIRING ART: Kieren Waters from Walhallow Primary school poses with his prize-winning piece. Photo: Gareth Gardner 251114GGA02IT WAS an eye for detail and pride in his Aboriginal heritage that earned Walhallow student Kieren Waters a top prize in an Australia-wide art competition this month.

The 11-year-old from Walhallow Public School was recognised for his workAboriginal Animals, a traditional painting using dot art and warm, earthy tones.

He was presented with the Australian Scholarships Group (ASG) Indigenous Art Award – one of five categories in the Young Australian Art and Writers’ Awards – at a ceremony in Melbourne, where he travelled with his parents and school principal on Saturday.

Keiren admits to being a cheeky, creative spark, and he loves his heritage, which shines through in his homage to indigenous art.

“I have liked drawing all my life. I like to draw in lead pencil mostly and I like dot painting.”

Keiren’s teacher and school principal Leanne Batho says she was thrilled with Keiren’s success.

“He loves to draw and he is painstakingly detailed with his art work,” Ms Batho said.

“Sometimes Keiren doesn’t finish his work because he works so carefully and slowly.”

ASG chief executive John Velegrinis said he was inspired by Kieren’s originality and pride in respecting his Aboriginal culture.

“Kieren comes from Walhallow Public School, which is one of only three schools in NSW to hold a 100 percent indigenous student population,” Mr Velegrinis said. “It is wonderful to see the success of these students like Keiren, knowing we’re supporting their education outside of traditional learning environments and encouraging them to explore their talents and perhaps steer them on their future career paths,” Mr Velegrinis said.

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