Heathdale flower 21st June 2024

Introducing the Imago Dei Prize

Explore Heathdale's celebration of artistic talent and creativity with the inaugural Imago Dei Prize exhibition at our Melton campus, where Year 11 Art Making and Exhibiting students captured the essence of their teachers through captivating portraits.

Heathdale flower

As part of our year-long celebration of 10 years of thriving in God's grace in the Melton area, we held a portrait exhibition and awards ceremony for the inaugural Imago Dei Prize in our own gallery space. The night saw local dignitaries, families, College leadership and staff all coming together to celebrate our students and their considerable portrait artworks.

Inspired by the prestigious Archibald Prize, our Year 11 VCE Art Making and Exhibiting students painted portraits of their teachers, reflecting not only their likeness but also their personality. Guided by Secondary Art Teacher, Mrs. Hannah Cutter, our emerging artists developed their own artistic styles using a mix of acrylic paint, coloured pencil, ink and mixed media.

“When they were working, our gallery space was set up like a studio,” explained Mrs. Cutter. “Students had a sense that their peers were on each other’s team and were going to support one another throughout the process. It felt like having professional support, as students were helping critique each other’s work in meaningful ways. There was a lot of constructive discussion about proportion, colour theory and technique as the students worked through their projects.”

The Imago Dei Prize was presented by Cr. Sophie Ramsay, Councillor for Coburn Ward, to Lily A. for her portrait of our Melton Campus Principal, Mr. Iain Belot. Lily captured her subject’s essence with outstanding technical skill, imagination, and understanding. 'Imago Dei' comes from the Latin translation of Genesis 1:27 and means 'Image of God'. We chose this name for our highest prize because at Heathdale, we believe that every person is made in God’s image, as taught to us in the Bible.

The artwork is titled ‘A Love for Reading’ and was created using pencil, ink, and collage on paper.

“When creating my artwork, I loved trying to include all the things that Mr. Belot told me he loved and adding deeper meaning through the details,” explained Lily. "I was nervous and surprised when I found out I had won the Imago Dei Prize because, while I enjoy drawing people, this was a much larger piece, which was a challenge.”

Lily & Mr Belot with her artwork titled 'A Love for Reading'

The Atelier Award, voted for by the Year 11 Art class, was presented to Davina V. by Kaylee Smith, Electorate Officer from the Office of Steve McGhie MP.

Davina & Mr Kopitschinski with her artwork titled 'Edified Endearment'

Additionally, the People's Choice Award, which celebrated the favourite portrait as voted by our wider College community in the lead-up to the Imago Dei Award Ceremony, was presented to Natasha L. by our Executive Principal, Ross Grace.

Natasha & Mr Hsiao with her artwork titled 'Hsiao Dollars'

The exhibition was a testament to the talent and dedication of our Year 11 Art students, who will be part of our Melton campus’ inaugural class of Year 12s in 2025. We can't wait to see what else they achieve in the future!