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What's eco in an art prize theme?

Updated: May 12

Juvenile Eastern Koel photo by David Noble

Image: Juvenile Eastern Koel photo by David Noble When I first joined the GreenWay Art Prize team in 2019, I struggled with communicating the themes. Since then I've been on a mission to help us all understand. SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT  –  ENVIRONMENT – URBAN ECOLOGY – WATERWAYS We welcome your personal interpretations of the GreenWay's eco art prize themes.   Tell us how your artwork represents the theme in your accompanying artist statement (150 words) 

When considering GreenWay themes I like to begin with WATERWAYS by asking the question – freshwater or saltwater?

image of freshwater meeting saltwater

We are FRESHWATER folks! The Cooks River Alliance, sponsor of our small sculpture award, is a partnership between councils in the Cooks River Catchment – BaysideCanterbury-Bankstown, Inner WestStrathfield and Sydney Water. Since 1997, councils and others along the river and across the catchment have worked together to improve the health of the Cooks River.

★ Pay homage to our freshwater birds, plants, animals and habitats and/or comment on environmental issues affecting our waterways. Urbanisation has negatively affected our waterways. Pollutants such as organic matter, heavy metals, a range of chemical fertilisers, pesticides, detergents and stormwater pollution have had a detrimental impact on wildlife. Invasive weeds and algae have also increased, sometimes resulting in algal blooms which impact freshwater food chains. URBAN ECOLOGY The relationship between human (and non-human) organisms and the urban, built environment – cities, smaller settlements and industrial areas, buildings, paved surfaces, transport infrastructure, parks and gardens – and the effects this has on energy, material resources, our community's health and wellbeing. Ecological Cities: vibrant, equitable, socially supportive, ecologically sustaining and economically viable communities.

an illustration of a vibrant city supported by a network of green plants and birds overhead

★ Recognisable landmarks, architecture and community activities along the GreenWay. Sustainability – reuse, recycling, conservation, preserving natural habitats and biodiversity.

a table showing sustainable transport versus todays transport


The GreenWay is an environmental and active travel corridor linking the Cooks River at Earlwood with the Parramatta River at Iron Cove. Personal transport is Australia's fastest growing source of emissions– our cars are a major contributor to climate change. Sustainable transportation is about balancing our current and future needs. Examples of sustainable transportation include walking, cycling, public transport, carpooling, car sharing, and green vehicles.

 ENVIRONMENT You've got this – it's everything! The GreenWay is a good news story. Tell us your good news story and relate it to the GreenWay in writing. Visit the GreenWay and be inspired. NB: while White Bay Power Station (2024 venue) is a very recognisable landmark, it's not within the GreenWay corridor, refer to the map on the home page – do not focus on this site/history and features unless you have a relevant environmental comment to make.

a glistening bubble full of a beautiful habitat


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