Artist Pirjo Juhola wins the Bell Bay Aluminum People's Choice Prize

RECOGNISED: Artist Pirjo Juhola with her award-winning work Skipping Girl. Picture: Neil Richardson

RECOGNISED: Artist Pirjo Juhola with her award-winning work Skipping Girl. Picture: Neil Richardson

Finding a burnt vehicle is an eyesore for most people, but for artist Pirjo Juhola it is an exciting source of recycled material for her sculptures. 

Juhola was awarded the Bell Bay Aluminum People’s Choice Prize for her work Skipping Girl as part of the Artentwine Biennial.

The representational piece reflects on the future adults will leave to their children. 

“I think we are not thinking enough for our children with all the things we do,” Juhola said. 

The skipping rope touches the ground so that the girl can swing in the wind. 

“[The girl] is all about the future we are leaving to our children, a sad future where she feels like a little girl powerless to do nothing but skip and hope for the best,” Juhola.

Only discovering her love for sculpture work in 2007, Juhola was humbled by the announcement that she’d won the people’s choice award. 

“It means people liked it and that is important, and it is important to my work,” she said. 

“I like the art that people understand and can appreciate, so the people’s choice award was absolutely wonderful.”

I used to paint a lot and draw, and around about 2007 I discovered sculpture, and it was like ‘oh my, this is it’. - Pirjo Juhola

Winning the award wasn’t the only recognition Juhola received.

As part of the prize she was invited to exhibit six sculptures at the Tasmanian Centre of Design during Festivale in January 2017. 

“I have two months to make five sculptures,” Juhola said. 

People can expect more recycled metals to feature in the other five sculptures. 

“I love doing recycled works - one of the works I did that I received good feedback for was made from rusty old car parts,” Juhola said. 

“I really like experimenting and doing different things.”

Juhola completed an Advanced Diploma of Fine Art at TasTafe in 2014. 

“I used to paint a lot and draw, and around about 2007 I discovered sculpture, and it was like ‘oh my, this is it’,” she said 

“I’ve done art all my life but now the children have left home and the animals are getting old I have time so I am making a determined effort and it is slowly getting there.

“That was one of the reasons I’d never taken art up because even though I liked painting and drawing, it was never fun to do and then I found sculpture.” Skipping Girl can be found at Tamar Ridge, Rosevears.  

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