SWELL Sculpture Festival is proud have to collaborated with Gold Coast Film Festival to revive the prestigious Chauvel Award with a new sculpted design for the award. 

The Chauvel Award, named in honour of Charles Chauvel commenced in 1993 and acknowledges an individual who has made significant contribution to Australian cinema. 
Charles Chauvel was not only born in Warwick and educated in Ipswich and Southport, but started his career in production and direction in Brisbane. He has a strong claim to be considered the most distinguished of Queensland-born filmmakers. His later films Heritage and Rats of Tobruk included substantial sequences filmed on location in the Gold Coast hinterland around Canungra.
More about Charles Chauvel


Working with local and renowned artist Leisa Russell, the sculpted design for the Chauvel Award represents how the Australian landscape and, in particular, the Gold Coast hinterland, can influence and reflect a creative journey.
Leisa’s passion for making objects with clay and other materials is inspired by the landscape around her hinterland home. Growing up on a rural property she has a deep appreciation of nature, and her environmentally themed works reflect this. The natural bushland and beaches in and around the Gold Coast influence her work.
“Having grown up and still living in the Gold Coast Hinterland, it’s easy to relate to Charles Chauvel’s affinity with the Springbrook and Lamington National Park. Visiting these areas still provokes in me, a sense of drama, suspense, wonder and surprise – much the same feelings as seeing a great Australian film for the first time.

Climbing a mountain isn’t just a pastime we associate with the outdoors but also with life in general and when achieving personal and career goals. For actors and artists within the film industry, awards such as The Chauvel Award acknowledge the triumphs and contributions of such individuals to Australian cinema. For these reasons, I have created a porcelain and bronze contemporary landscape for the award with a slim slice of mountainous form.”
In 2012, Leisa won the Gold Coast International Ceramic Award for her work 11 Shades of Blue, an exquisite silk and porcelain dress. Leisa’s work showcases versatile and wide-ranging skills with experience in a variety of mediums such as bronze, clay, resin, silver, wood, forged steel, concrete and found objects. She displays an unwavering insistence on portraying her messages by cleverly combining different mediums to achieve the desired effects while maintaining the integrity of the process. The scale of her pieces ranges from the most intricate porcelain and sterling silver forms to life-size bronze and concrete works.
Leisa’s work reflects her increasing passion for porcelainous clay bodies and her energetic enthusiasm for both found and created objects, featured in her repetition projects, where she tirelessly reproduces miniature forms in porcelain to create surfaces and textures that arouse a visual and most importantly, tactile experience for her audience.



Australian actress Claudia Karvan has been recognised as the recipient of the prestigious 2016 Chauvel Award as part of the 14th annual Gold Coast Film Festival. 
The Award recognises Claudia Karvan, who has achieved popular success and critical acclaim through her work in film and television. Having begun her career at 14, she has an extensive filmography; she first appeared in Gillian Armstrong’s High Tide (1987) with Judy Davis, then in Phillip Noyce’s Echoes of Paradise (1987).
On Saturday 9 April, the Gold Coast Film Festival will welcome audiences to a special event: David Stratton In Conversation With Claudia Karvan. The night will be an intimate look at Karvan’s career, accompanied by footage from her films and moderated by film critic and previous Chauvel Award recipient, David Stratton.\

The Gold Coast Film Festival (GCFF) celebrates and promotes all aspects of film and filmmaking from one of Australia’s pre-eminent filmmaking locations and holiday destinations – the Gold Coast. From internationally acclaimed dramas, comedies and genre films, locally made indie gems and family features, the GCFF offers a culturally diverse, interactive and engaging program of film, events and special guests. For filmmakers and students alike the festival runs a series of free seminars and workshops to educate, inspire and embrace the Gold Coast as a filmmaking destination.

40/40 Creative