Winners of the 2021 Young Creative Awards

Wednesday 22 September 2021

Inner West Library and History has announced the winners of the 2021 Young Creatives Awards.

A record 176 entries were received.

“The Young Creatives Awards go from strength to strength every year – even during lockdowns,” said Inner West Mayor Rochelle Porteous.

“As usual, the writing and artworks are remarkable, showing incredible maturity and ingenuity.

“I congratulate all the winners and also thank the judges who were obviously so impressed at the standard of our Inner West young creatives,” Mayor Porteous said.

Judges for the writing awards were Nadia Wheatley and Ursula Dubosarsky.

“They may be locked down, but the inventive minds of the young writers of the Inner West ride an impressively imaginative range, from the streets of Delhi to the House Committee for Un-American Activities, to the buses and supermarkets and parks of Marrickville,” said Ursula.

“Thanks to all the young writers and artists who entered. It is so important to have stories and artwork that come out of our local environment and community,” said Nadia.

Art awards judges were painter and drawer Carmel Byrne and photographer Adrian Cook.

“If it grabs me and it is something that I would want on my wall and I think yeah, I could look at that all day, then that’s important to me. There was plenty to love,” said Adrian.

"I enjoyed studying the early beginnings of students developing their personal visual language and the level of sophistication in a number of the works was most impressive,” said Carmel.

This year, a third prize category was introduced called Youth Librarian’s choice, giving Inner West librarians an opportunity to award six more young people with prizes.

The full list of winners is:

• Young Writer Award 12 -15 years: Hitkarau Girn - My Little Angel

• Young Writer Award 16-18 years: Bessie Yuan - Red Camelia's Blooming

• Equal Winners 19-24 years: Harry Lawler Burner - Is Anybody Out There? and Lily Cameron - The Body Memory

Youth librarian’s picks – Writing. Highly commended

• Oliver Whitehouse – Pluviophile
• Darcy Phelan - The New Sound.
• Caitlin Lawler - Middle of My Mid-Twenties

• Young Artist Award 12-15 years: Isabel Carrig - Homage to Basquiat

• Young Artist Award 16-18 years: Yesha Young - Girl on The Bus

• Young Artist 19-24 years: Tilda Clarke - Stitched Memory

Youth librarian’s picks – Art. Highly commended

• James Nguyen - Daily Life
• Oliver Whitehouse - Afloat
• Mia Economou - Forest Bathing

Tempe High School teacher Maruti Lyons was thrilled that three students he taught in Extension English – Oliver, Darcy and Amy – had gained recognition for their writing.

“It was a huge boost to the whole class whilst working from home and that their google classroom chat was buzzing with the news. The Awards are a great motivator and reward,” he said.

For more details and to read and see the works go to:

For media enquiries, contact Shane Teehan, External Communications Officer, 9392 5117 or

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Page last updated: 22 Sep 2021