The Heysen Prize

The Heysen Prize was established by the Hahndorf Academy in 1997 to commemorate the nationally and internationally eminent local artist, Sir Hans Heysen (1877-1968).

Sir Hans Heysen had a deep connection with the Australian landscape and is famous for his paintings and drawings of Hahndorf in the Adelaide hills, and the Flinders Ranges. He documented village life in Hahndorf and conserved the mature gums in the surrounding area. Because of the implied realism of his pictures, many think of his art as literal depictions of the landscape that existed in front of him.

Art is a visual construction and Heysen was foremost an artist who was concerned with the conceptual statement that his pictures made. He was not adverse to adding trees where he felt they were needed and he removed trees and shrubs if they detracted from his intended statement.

The Heysen Prize is a biennial competition which will next be held in 2018.


The Heysen Prize for Landscape 2016 encourages artists to express their deep connection with, or their deep concern for, the Australian landscape and environment. We wish to acknowledge that the word 'landscape' here includes all possible aspects of the natural, rural, and urban landscape.

The Heysen Prize for Landscape 2016 Acquisitive - $15,000: This prize will be awarded to the work judged best of the exhibition. This is an acquisitive prize with $15,000 prize money.

People's Choice Prize Non-acquisitive - $1,000: This prize is awarded to the work voted for by popular choice as the most appealing work during the exhibition.

Entries for the Heysen Prize for Landscape are now closed

The pre-selection for the the Heysen Prize for Landscape 2016 has taken place, Judges Erica Green & Nici Cumpston have selected 51 works for the finalist exhibition. The winner of the arts prize will be announced on October 8th at our Heysen prize event. Congratulations to all the successful artists whose work has been selected for the finalist exhibition

Lucky Kngwarreye, Helen Sherriff, Elizabeth Doidge, Annette Vincent, Dana Kinter, Robyn Finlay, Hailey Lane, Georgina Agius, Anna Glynn, David Lawruk, Alison Mitchell, India Flint, Susan Bruce, Fleur Brett, Jeff Mincham, Matthew Symons, Mark Kimber, Liz Butler, Ed Douglas, Mike Barr, Paul Sloan, Rebecca Hartman-Kearns, James Walker, Alice Blanch, Louise Feneley, Thom Buchanan, Jenn Brazier, Sera Waters, Bradley Lay, Ken Orchard, James Dodd, Tim Thomson, Lee Salomone, Robyn Kinsela, Janet Ayliffe, Ursula Kiessling, Jarrad Martyn, Janine Mackintosh, Michael Hocking, Ron Rowe, Glen Ash, Peter Barrien, Christopher Boha, Peter Walker, Martin Rek, Sophie Calgari, Ron Gibbings-Johns, Llewelyn Ash, Cristina Metelli


Sponsors of The Heysen prize for Landscape 2016

Hahndorf & Districts Lions Club

Hahndorf & Districts Lions Club





2014 Heysen Prize for Interpretation of Place

Receiving the $10,000 award was Adelaide photographer Che Chorley for his photograph Samudera Satu (pictured below), a dramatic and unique ocean scene shot at Petrel Cover, Victor Harbour, a costal area which forms part of the Heysen Trail.

Chorley finds great solace and photographic motivation within the remarkably varied coastline of South Australia particularly along the Fleurieu Peninsula where he also enjoys surfing. He is the first photographer to win the Heysen Prize and describes his photographs as modern, digital interpretations of traditionally tactile places. He says he took the photo in mid-winter on an otherwise unremarkable day. ‘It is a colour photograph yet monochromatic in nature and designed to blur the lines between a landscape and a seascape.’ Samudera Satuwhich can be anytime, anywhere yet never again, is part of a photographic series of 18 portraits of the South Australian seas entitled The Sea and Me which was shown recently in Chorley’s first solo exhibition at the Mill where he also has his studio. He says of his winning photograph ‘I aim to explore the sheer scale of the ocean, whilst embracing the minutia. It is a modern South Australian seascape with timeless and placeless elements’. Judge Mark Kimber, Studio Head of Photography and New Media, School of Art Architecture and Design, University of SA praised the originality of Chorley’s work, saying ‘Small waves rise like ruffled carpet out to sea or as dark undulating dunes rippling the horizon. This truly unique work where scale is lost and the macrocosm and microcosm drift in a strangely beguiling flux’.