Nikala Bourke is an emerging Tasmanian artist based in Hobart. Working primarily in photography and the visual arts, she completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honours in 2017 at the College of the Arts, University of Tasmania.
She is represented by Penny Contemporary Gallery in Hobart as well as the Henry Jones Art Hotel in Hobart, where she has a permanent collection available for purchase. She is a casual tutor in first year photography to students at the College of Media and Art (University of Tasmania).
Celebrating the mystery and enigmatic nature of water and replicating the waters' edge and the beach landscape is a common thread in her practice. As is the observation of natural materials, predominantly local flowers, plants and seaweeds.
Her other career as a Peri-operative Registered Nurse inspires her arts practice in many ways. Working alongside people and caring for their wounds influences the intimate and often visceral nature of her work.
She is combining both of these careers within an arts and health research project in 2022 through the University of Tasmania.
To fuel her curiosity and experimentation in a visual sense, Nikala utilises light, magnification, glass and water within both analogue (alternative) and digital photographic processes.
Representation of structure and close observation of change in form become evident in her artwork, as does the desire to discover, explore and question the intriguing relationship between ourselves and nature.
Nikala uses water and the flower as metaphor for many elements of the human psyche and a symbol of Vanitas - the brevity of life. Vibrant colour and texture arising from nature is another common thread in Nikala's work.
Education, Awards and Scholarships:
2022 Arts and Health Masters Research Scholarship - University of Tasmania.
2021 Arts Tasmania Public Arts Commission with colleague Suze van der Beek at the North West Regional Hospital, Burnie, Tasmania.
2021 Finalist, The Henry Jones Art Prize, Hobart, Tasmania.
2019 Highly Commended, 2019 Kingborough Art Prize.
2019 Finalist, The Henry Jones Art Prize, Hobart, Tasmania.
2018 Finalist, The Henry Jones Art Prize, Hobart, Tasmania.
2018 Finalist, Tidal Art Prize, Devonport Regional Gallery, Tasmania.
2017 Bachelor of Fine Arts, Second Class Honours Upper Division, University of Tasmania.
2017 Placed on the Executive Dean's Honour Roll in the College ofArts, University of Tasmania, for study in the degree of Bachelor ofFine Arts with Honours
2017 Awarded the Arts Honours Scholarship, University of Tasmania.
2016 Placed on the Dean's Honour Roll for the Faculty of Arts,University of Tasmania, for the study in the degree Bachelor of FineArts.
2016 Member of The Golden Key International Honour Society foracademic achievement.
2016 Bachelor of Fine Arts, Photography Major, Tasmanian College of The Arts (Hunter Street), University of Tasmania.
2016 Finalist, Birchalls Tertiary Art Prize, Launceston, Tasmania.
2015 Recipient of the Ted Pool Memorial Award for commitment, abilitiesand dedication. Rotary Club of Hobart and Tasmanian College of theArts, University of Tasmania.
2015 Winner - Digital Art Category, Kingborough Art Prize and Exhibition.
2014 Awarded the Jon Lagos Prize in Fine Arts for excellence andartistic merit in second year studies. University of Tasmania.
2014 Dean's Honour Roll, Faculty of Arts, University of Tasmania.
2014 Finalist, Birchalls Tertiary Art Prize, Launceston, Tasmania.
2009 Tafe Tasmania Hobart, Diploma in Digital Imaging.
Nikala is represented by Penny Contemporary Gallery in Hobart, Tasmania, where she has regular solo shows:
Nikala is also represented the Henry Jones Art Hotel and has work in the Art Hotel Collection available for purchase:
November 2021 - The Pull of Water, Penny Contemporary, Hobart.
June 2021 - The Pull of Water, Moonah Arts Centre.
June 2019 - The Temple of Flora, Penny Contemporary, Hobart.
January 2017 - The Skins of the River, Salamanca Arts Centre, Top Gallery Space.
2022 Lightwave Festival, Nubeena, Tasmania - Portholes – projections of circular water photograms.
2022 Moonah Arts Centre, Tasmania – Protons: projections of spinning energy particles, waves of radiation.
2021 RANT Arts Tasmania – Minds Do Matter, QVMAG Inveresk, Launceston.
2020 Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne, Salon Show
2018 Circle of Stones - curated by artist Leonie Oakes, Gallery 152 York, Western Australia.
2018 Beautiful Women - Penny Contemporary Art Gallery, Hobart.
2018 Waves and Wave Formations – with Cath Robinson, Moonah Arts Centre, Hobart.
2018 Fecund – Fertile Worlds. A Touring Exhibition curated by Clare Armitage, Artback Northern Territory and South Australia.
2018 Drawing From Earth - combined Show with artists Linda Crispin and Jillian Catto. Sawtooth ARI, Launceston.
2017 Members Show, Contemporary Art Tasmania, Hobart.
2017 Graduation Show for Honours and Masters Students, Plimsoll Gallery Hobart,Tasmanian College of the Arts, University of Tasmania.
2017 Works In Progress Show for Honours and Masters Students, Plimsoll Gallery Hobart, Tasmanian College of the Arts, University of Tasmania.
2017 Panopticon - Cocoon Installation. Presented by the Tasmanian College of the Arts, University of Tasmania, in association with Dark Mofo.
2017 Ten Days on The Island – photographer and project assistant to Dr Brigita Ozolins for her Brighton Army Camp Project
2017 In Praise of Photography - TopSpace StudioGallery, Hobart. Curated by Christl Berg and Ilona Schneider.
2017 MoMa - Mona Market - Installation as part of art and science collaboration for The Derwent Heavy Metals Project, Mona.
2017 The Medium is the Message - with Phillip England and Dr Christine Owen, Entrepot Gallery, Hunter Street, Hobart.
2016 Members Show, Contemporary Art Tasmania, Hobart.
2016 Birchalls Tertiary Art Prize Finalist Exhibition, NEW Gallery, Launceston.
2016 Kingborough Art Prize and Exhibition, Kingston Beach Hall.
2015 Not Just Painting, The Long Gallery, Salamanca Arts Centre.
2015 Members Show, Contemporary Art Tasmania, Hobart.
2015 Graduates Show: Final Body of Work Exhibition for Studio Majors (Photography), Tasmanian College of the Arts (Utas).
2015 Rotary Club of Hobart Annual Art Show, Wrest Point.
2015 Past Their Prime: A Celebration and Vestige with Phillip England, Entrepot Gallery, Hunter Street, Hobart.
2015 Kingborough Art Prize and Exhibition, Kingston Beach Community Hall.
2014 Members Show, Contemporary Art Tasmania, Hobart.
2014 Birchalls Tertiary Art Prize Finalist Exhibition, NEW Gallery, Launceston.
2013 Members Show, Contemporary Art Tasmania, Hobart.
2009 Mawson Waterside Pavillion, Hobart. Real Beauties: Women Living with Breast Cancer, with Victoria Henderson.
Plateform - a French online magazine aimed at exhibiting new artists and talents. Issue 96, pp.100-117, 2017.
University of Tasmania (Tasmanian College of the Arts) Student Booklet for 2016.
Kingborough Chronicle, Monday, 11 May 2015.
Togatus Magazine, Issue 6, August 2014, p.13.