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Winners Announcement

On 31 March 2021, Rookwood General Cemetery held the launch of the exhibition for the inaugural Stonemason Carving Competition.

Set within the picturesque gardens of the cemetery, participating stonemasons and industry stakeholders were invited to view and appreciate the unique hand carving skills of NSW’s stonemasons.

Through this competition, we invited established stonemasons and apprentices within NSW hand carve a snapshot of an architectural detail, feature or profile within stone.

The carvings submitted depict a variety of scales and forms, and were judged on design, execution and finish.

Judges included

  • Michael Landers, Head Teacher of Stonemasonry, TAFE NSW
  • Paul Thurlow, Head Sculptor, Heritage Stone Works (Public Works); and
  • Katie Hicks, NSW Cemeteries Advisor, National Trust

The judges faced the unenviable position of selecting first and second place, as well as an apprentice award. After much deliberation, the winners are as follows:

First Prize

Luke McDermott, with his snapshot of the Frazer Fountain.

Luke won a hamper of stone products (valued at $1,300), generously provided by CDK Stone. Judges marvelled at the fine work, particularly the dexterity needed to carve such delicate edges.

Second prize

Dan O'Dwyer, with his snapshot of the guilloche at the Acropolis on the Erechtheion.

Dan won a set of French Guillet chisels (valued at $1,000), provided by Diamach. The judges were particularly taken by the skill needed to create the detailed symmetry involved in the piece.

Apprentice Award

Daniel Kilminster, with his gothic-inspired piece of intricate foliage carving.

Daniel won a set of JP carving chisels (valued at $300), provided by sailMade. Judges noted that this piece was certainly a contender for the main prize, and were awed by the detailed work of this second-year apprentice.

Congratulations to all stonemasons that took part. Rookwood General Cemetery is held as the pinnacle place of stonemason artistry and craftsmanship and this competition was all about showcasing the stonemasonry skills historically aligned with Rookwood.

Rookwood General Cemetery would like to acknowledge the huge amount of time and effort that went into these works, as well as the unique skill and craftsmanship of the stonemasons that took part.

The exhibition is available at Rookwood Cemetery until Sunday, 16 May 2021.

Find out more: https://www.rookwoodcemetery.com.au/stonemason-carving-competition


Media enquiries

Kristy Wan
Marketing & Events Coordinator, Rookwood General Cemetery

0499 910 221