Christian Lock was awarded a Samstag Scholarship in 2013, allowing him to study at the Parsons School of Art and Design, New York, in 2014.
The scholarship allowed Lock, who is also a lecturer at the University of South Australia, to have a year off to focus on making his work.
“It gave me the opportunity to immerse myself in a place that I felt was pertinent to my practice,” Lock says. “It allowed me to mix with other international artists and make new networks and new friends.”
Christian Lock, Yellow Mitsubishi, 2016, polyester resin, fibreglass cloth, synthetic pigments with wooden frame, 198 x 198 cm
Lock believes leaving the confines of South Australia and going to a place that is central to contemporary art, especially his practice, painting, helped him develop his work to another level.
“Since I have been back I have had a number of shows; being a Samstag scholar opens up a whole range of new opportunities to you,” he says.
Christian Lock, Benzo 2016, polyester resin, fibreglass cloth, synthetic pigments with wooden frame, 198 x 198 cm
Lock has also been able to pass on the experience to his students, which has allowed him to also develop his career as a lecturer.
Looking at the experience and the work he has produced since, Lock can identify the effect the scholarship has had on his practice. “I went there in a sense more like a traditional painter. Since then my work has developed to be more involved with the idea of painting in the expanded field, where painting becomes other things like sculpture or installation.”
Christian Lock, Fentanyl, 2016, polyester resin, fibreglass cloth, synthetic pigments with wooden frame, 198 x 198 cm
As a practising South Australian artist, Lock believes that the Samstag Scholarships are extremely important for young artists to help them broaden their horizons and their networks.
“It’s hard to quantify but it instantly changes your status in a way, going from a young artist or a student, or just a South Australian artist, to becoming one who is thrust into the big world of contemporary art.”
Quicksilver: 25 Years of Samstag Scholarships
Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art
Friday October 14 until Friday December 9
Photos: Grant Hancock, courtesy the artist