Michael Simms is a multi-award winning artist based in Sydney. Born in Adelaide, he completed degrees in psychology and film at Flinders University before winning a scholarship to study fine art at the Julian Ashton Art School. Inspired by subjects on the cusp of change, Michael’s paintings and drawings are both literal and allegorical expressions of transformation.

In 2016, Michael was awarded the Cambridge Studio Gallery Portrait Prize, as well as the Cliftons Sydney Art Prize and the Cliftons People’s Choice Award. He has been a finalist in several major art awards, including the Black Swan Prize for Portraiture, the Emerging Artists Award, the Calleen Art Award, the Contemporary Art Awards and the Percival Tucker Portrait Prize. Notable sitters include Booker prize-winning author Thomas Keneally, AO, former netball champion Liz Ellis, AM, and Helpmann award-winning actors Paul Capsis and Genevieve Lemon. He is currently a resident artist at Project 504, an experimental art collective in North Sydney.

CV

b. 1987, Adelaide, Australia

EDUCATION

  • 2011 - 2014 The Julian Ashton Art School (Diploma of Fine Arts)
  • 2006 - 2011 Flinders University (Bachelor of Behavioural Science and Bachelor of Arts)

SELECT AWARDS AND PRIZES

  • 2017 Finalist in the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize, Juniper Hall, Sydney
  • 2017 Finalist in the Fisher's Ghost Art Award, Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney 
  • 2017 Finalist in the Lyn McCrea Memoral Drawing Prize, Noosa Regional Gallery, Queensland 
  • 2017 Finalist in the Mosman Art Prize, Mosman Art Gallery, Sydney
  • 2017 Finalist in the Manning Art Prize, Manning Regional Gallery, Manning
  • 2017 Finalist in the Marie Ellis Drawing Prize, Jugglers Art Space Inc, Brisbane
  • 2017 Highly Commended at the Lethbridge 10000 Small Scale Art Award, Lethbridge Gallery, Brisbane 
  • 2017 Finalist in the Contemporary Art Awards, Brisbane 
  • 2016 Winner of the Cliftons Sydney Art Prize
  • 2016 Winner of the Cliftons People's Choice Award
  • 2016 Finalist in the Blacktown Art Prize, Blacktown Arts Centre, Sydney
  • 2016 Finalist in the Black Swan Prize for Portraiture, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth
  • 2016 Finalist in the Contemporary Art Awards, Brisbane
  • 2016 Finalist in the Marie Ellis Drawing Prize, Jugglers Art Space Inc, Brisbane
  • 2016 Finalist in the Emerging Artist Award, Fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne
  • 2016 Finalist in the Calleen Art Award, Cowra Regional Gallery, Cowra
  • 2016 Finalist in the Percival Tucker Portrait Prize, Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville
  • 2016 Winner of the 'Who Is Looking At You' Portrait Prize, Cambridge Studio Gallery, Melbourne
  • 2016 Highly Commended at the ArtWorld Studio Portrait Prize, ArtWorld Studio Gallery, Brisbane
  • 2015 Finalist in the Contemporary Art Awards, Brisbane
  • 2015 Highly Commended at the 'Who Is Looking At You' Portrait Prize, Cambridge Studio Gallery, Melbourne
  • 2013 Winner of the Richard and Wenda Ashton Art Prize
  • 2013 Winner of the Sydney Mechanics School of Art Full-time Scholarship for The Julian Ashton Art School
  • 2011 Recipient of the Chancellor's Commendation at Flinders University

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

  • 2017 'Brink', Cambridge Studio Gallery, Collingwood, Melbourne 
  • 2016 'Reverie', ArtWorld Studio Gallery, Norman Park, Brisbane

SELECT GROUP EXHIBITIONS

  • 2017 'Exploration 17', Flinders Lane Gallery, Melbourne 
  • 2017 ' Virtual Connections', No 1 Martin Place (Mezzanine Floor), Sydney
  • 2017 'Medley II', Gaffa Gallery, Sydney 
  • 2016 'Mythos', The Depot II Gallery, Waterloo, Sydney
  • 2016 'Medley', The Depot Gallery, Waterloo, Sydney 
  • 2016 'Uncovered: Making a Work of Art', Project 504, St Leonards, Sydney
  • 2015 'Vision', M2 Gallery, Surry Hills, Sydney
  • 2015 'Every Boardroom Needs An Artist', The Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney
  • 2015 Flash Exhibition, Tap Gallery, Darlinghurst, Sydney
  • 2015 'Who Is Looking At You' Portrait Prize, Cambridge Studio Gallery, Collingwood, Melbourne
  • 2014 The Julian Ashton Art School Students and Teachers Exhibition, The Sydney Mechanics School of Art
  • 2014 The Rocks Village Bizarre, Pop Up Gallery, The Rocks, Sydney
  • 2013 The Julian Ashton Art School Students and Teachers Exhibition, The Sydney Mechanics School of Art
  • 2012 Building Bridges Exhibition, The UTS Gallery, Sydney
  • 2011 Adelaide Fringe Festival Shimmering West Art Collective, Higher Ground, Adelaide

PUBLICATIONS

  • Rees, J. 2016. Contemporary Art Awards: Finalist Exhibition 2015. 23 January-23 June 2016, Awards, Brisbane, Queensland

MEDIA