The Queensland University of Technology (QUT) acknowledges the Turrbal and Yugara, as the First Nations owners of the lands where QUT now stands. We pay respect to their Elders, lores, customs and creation spirits. We recognise that these lands have always been places of teaching, research and learning.

QUT acknowledges the important role Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people play within the QUT community.


Welcome to Hold Sway.

Hold Sway is the 2020 QUT Visual Arts Graduate Exhibition. This online platform captures this year’s exhibition and showcases the art practices of 32 emerging artists. Hold Sway features an online exhibition catalogue and presents virtual events including artist talks, screenings and performances from 11th – 28th November, 2020.

The art practices featured in Hold Sway address the challenges facing us today – climate activism, our relationship to nature and each other, animal rights and protection, gender fluidity, sexuality, cultural diversity, mental health, spirituality, memory and embodied experience – the fabric of how we engage in our everyday lives and the connections we continually remake in the societal, ecological and creative environments we now inhabit.

These graduates are emerging into a complex world, with many unknown challenges but also, yet to be determined future possibilities. We wish them all the very best for the future, and are confident that they will hold sway, while making insightful, exciting and unique personal and cultural contributions to contemporary art and life.


We would like to acknowledge the Visual Arts academic staff, technical staff and 3rd year students who contributed to the 2020 Graduate Exhibition.

Thank you to Charlie Hillhouse and Carl Warner for video and photographic documentation of the exhibition.

The student management team was: Ruaa Al-Rikabi, Charlee Carthew De-Looze, Isabella Catenaro, Bella Deary, Zara Dudley, Georgia Hayward, Jasmine Megson, Lucy Nguyen-Hunt, Nicholas Tossmann.


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Hilde Chenhall Scholarship Award

Winner: Rhanjell Villanueva

Highly Commended: Lucy Nguyen-Hunt

This Scholarship is supported by the Chenhall Charitable Trust in memory of renowned local artist Hilde Chenhall to support emerging visual artists to have an outstanding impact on the field. The industry member on the panel this year was Amy-Clare McCarthy.

See Rhanjell’s artworks here

See Lucy’s artworks here

Eyeline Magazine Prize

Winner: Nicholas Tossman

The Eyeline Prize is awarded to an exceptional visual arts graduate, based on their artwork in the Graduate Exhibition and commitment to developing their future art practice. The prize is awarded by Executive Editor, Sarah Follent.

See Nicholas’ artworks here

Milani Family Prize

Winner: Bella Deary

The Milani Family Art Prize is awarded to an outstanding graduate of the BFA (Visual Arts) on the strength of their work presented in the Graduate Exhibition. The esteemed judge this year was artist Vernon Ah Kee.

See Bella’s artworks here

NAVA Ignition Prize

Winner: Lillian Whitaker

The NAVA ignition Prize is awarded to a graduating Visual Arts student with outstanding achievement and future potential in professional practices.

See Lillian’s artworks here