Napier Waller Art Prize

The Australian War Memorial’s Napier Waller Art Prize encourages artistic excellence, promotes the transformative power of creativity, and raises awareness of the experiences and talent of service personnel.

Now in its fourth year, the 2022 prize was open to current and former service personnel of the Australian Defence Force.

This year, the Memorial received 116 entries across a diverse range of artistic media. A panel of art professionals from the Memorial chose a shortlist of 28 works and the judging panel selected 14 as highly commended.

The 2022 Napier Waller Art Prize exhibition, featuring the highly commended works, is on show at Parliament House until 20 November 2022.

The accompanying online exhibition features the 28 shortlisted works. Shortlisted artists are eligible for the People’s Choice Award, which has a cash prize of $5,000. Voting for the People’s Choice will continue via the Memorial’s website until the exhibition closes. 

Initiated in 2018, the Prize was named after Mervyn Napier Waller, an Australian artist who enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in August 1915. In May 1917, he was wounded in the right arm while serving with the 11th Field Artillery Brigade during the fighting at Bullecourt. His arm was later amputated and during his convalescence he learned to write and draw with his left hand, saying ‘An artist draws with his head, not his hands’.

In 1937, Waller was chosen to create the mosaics and stained-glass windows in the Memorial’s Hall of Memory.

The Napier Waller Art Prize is sponsored by The Hospital Research Foundation Group, DVA and Thales Australia, and is supported by the University of Canberra.

Logo of Napier Wallace Art Prize