SHOUFAY DERZ                                                                                                           

Lives and works in Sydney, Australia
Nationality: Australian/German

Derz’s  practice, through photography, sculpture and video installation, investigates the limits and possibilities of language, and the ambiguities faced when attempting to visually articulate the unknown. Informed by contemporary framings of the sublime, cultural heritage, and memorialization, her work looks at the creative tension which is created by the dialogue between materiality and absence. Just as the writer uses words to express the ineffable, her practice engages the intersections between known and unknown worlds. The resultant, elegiac artworks are simultaneously a lament on the transience of life, and a celebration of its mystery. Elemental and alchemical, her works harness diverse materials including the life-cycle of silk moths, glass, metals, textiles, eucalyptus, ink and pure indigo pigment.

Her work was featured in the 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart and acquired by the AGSA. She has exhibited her works widely, held solo shows in Australia and exhibited in China, Taiwan, Singapore, Korea and New Zealand. Recent career highlights from the last year include a solo show at Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, exhibiting new works at Auckland Festival of Photography with a retrospective of her landscape photographs; inclusion in the ‘4th International New Media Forum’ held at the Sichuan Fine Arts Institute Chongqing, China and ‘The Fate of the Image’, an exhibition curated by Wang Chunchen from China Academy of Fine Arts Museum; and showing at New Media Now, Samrye International Media Arts Festival, New Media “Now, VM Art Museum Korea.

Born in Sydney, to German and Taiwanese parentage, she holds a MFA at UNSW and has received several awards and grants including Australia Council New Work grants, the prestigious 52nd Blake Prize for Religious Art and recently the Carstairs Residency Prize at Bundanon Trust. Derz is undertaking a Phd at Sydney College of Arts, University of Sydney.


2018   In Memory of Water, Manly Art Gallery and Museum
2016   The wish, Bathusrt Regional Art Gallery
2015  The wish, Shoufay Derz, Artereal Gallery
2013   Shoufay Derz, Artereal Gallery
           Depart without Return, Winter festival, Taipei Artist Village, Taiwan
2012   Negatives, Queensland Centre for photography
2011   Depart Without Return, Cofa Space, Sydney
2007   Shoufay Derz, Delmar Gallery, Sydney
             Transportation Love Song: Inseparable, Art and disability, M1 Singapore Fringe Festival
             Radii Heart. AWE space II, University of New South Wales. Sydney
            Entanglement, special project collaboration with Owen Leong. Westspace, Melbourne
2006   Break-up curated by David Teh and Jasper Knight , Half dozen festival, China town public art project,               Asia-Australia Arts Centre, Gallery 4a, Sydney
2004   Radii Heart, Sherman Galleries, Sydney


2017 Artereal Gallery + Media X Mumm curated video sector | ART CENTRAL HONG KONG
           2017 Hazelhurst Art on Paper Award| Hazelhusrt Regional Gallery | 20 May - 16 July
           64th Blake Prize | Kinross Arts Centre | 7 April - 26 May

2016  The 39th Alice Prize, Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs
             The 64th Blake Prize, Casula Powerhouse Arts Center
             New Media Now, Samrye International Media Arts Festival 2015, VN Museum, Korea
              Seasons of Birth | Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture
              Seasons of Birth | The McGlade Gallery, Australian Catholic University , Sydney
              The Blake Prize | Wangaratta Art Gallery | 19th November 2016 - 8th January 2017

2015  The Fate of Image, The Forth International New Media forum, curated by Wang Chunchen,
             Chongqing, Sichuan Fine Arts Institute, China
2015 Festival of Fisher’s Ghost Art Award, Campbelltown Arts Centre
             Video Platform
, Art Stage Singapore, curated by Paul Greenaway of GAG Projects
             Stations of the Cross, McGlade Gallery, curated by Rosemary Crumlin & Doug Purnell
              #YOLO, curated by Rhianna Walcott,  Artereal Gallery  

  Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: DARK HEART curated by Nick Mitzevich, Art Gallery of South              Australia
             Wondermountain curated by Joanna Bayndrian, Penrith Regional Gallery
             New Contemporaries curated by Nick Tsoutis, SCA Galleries
             Models for the Afterlife curated by Catherine Benz, Delmar Gallery
             Conquest of Space curated by Andrew Frost, COFA Galleries
             The 38th Alice Prize, Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs
             Is this Art? curated by dLux Media Arts, Artereal Gallery
              Unveiled curated by Emma Benichou, Gallery Smith Project Space
              2014 Bowness Photography Prize, Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne

2013  Phantom Limb (with Owen Leong and Cyrus Tang), UTS Gallery
             Pigeon Auction curated by Toni Bailey, Casula Power House
             Hazelhurst Art on Paper Art Award, Hazelhurst Regional Art Gallery
             Bowness Photography Prize, Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne
             61st Blake Prize Tour, Australian Jewish Museum, Melbourne

 2012  Light Sensitive, works from the Verghis collection. Touring to Moree Plains Gallery, Goulburn              Regional Art Gallery, Hawkesbury Regional Art Gallery, The Glasshouse Regional Gallery, Tamworth              Regional Gallery, Grafton Regional Gallery, Shoalhaven City Arts Centre.
             Shelf Life 2012 curated by Catherine Benz, Delmar Gallery, Sydney
              The 37th Alice Prize Exhibition, Araluen Galleries, Alice Springs

2011  Shelf Life 2011 curated by Catherine Benz, Delmar Gallery, Sydney
             Annual members show 2011, Asia-Australia Arts centre, Gallery 4a, Sydney2010

2010  An Insight, Trinity Grammar School Art Collection, curated by Catherine Benz, Delmar Gallery
             Annual members show 2010, Asia-Australia Arts centre, Gallery 4a, Sydney
             Shelf Life 2010, Delmar Gallery

2009   The Spirit Within: Australian Contemporary Art, Parliament of World Religions, Melbourne , curated              by Rosemary Crumlin, Isobel Crombie & Helen Light
             Light Sensitive, works from the Verghis collection, curated by Richard Perran, Bathurst Regional Art              Gallery
             The Liverpool City Art Prize, Casula Power Arts House, Casula
             Life of Staff, See Street Gallery

2008  Asian Traffic, selected works on tour: Today Art Museum, Beijing; Zendai Museum of Modern Art,              Shanghai; OCTA Museum of Contemporary Art, Shenzhen
             Annual members show 2008, Asia-Australia Arts centre, Gallery 4a, Sydney

  The 34th Alice Prize Exhibition, Araluen Galleries, Alice Springs

2004    One of, Festivus 04. Sherman galleries, Sydney
              Asian Traffic: Phase 6, Official Parallel Event of the Biennale of Sydney, curated by Binghui Huangfu,               Asia-Australia Arts Centre, Sydney

2003   52rd Blake Prize for Religious Art, Touring Blake Exhibition 04(selected works). Grafton Regional              Gallery, Stanthorpe Regional Art gallery, Australian Catholic University (ACU) National, Strathfield,              NSW and Melbourne
             Ulterior, with Sam Smith & David Westerman, Firstdraft Gallery, Sydney

2002   51st Blake Prize for Religious Art, The Touring Blake Exhibition selected works: Tamworth Regional              Gallery, Devonport Regional Gallery, Coffs Harbor Regional Gallery, ACU National, Strathfield NSW              and Melbourne Vic
             Under the Sun, EPS Gallery, University of New South Wales, Sydney


2016    Winner of  Carstairs Residency Prize, Bundanon Trust, NAVA
               Finalist, Grace Cossington Smith Award. Judges: Rhonda Davis and Dr Andrew Frost
               Grant Recipient, Australia Council for the Arts (Skills and development grants)
               Finalist, 55th Fishers Ghost Award Campbelltown Arts Centre

2015    Grant Recipient, Australia Council for the Arts Project for Individuals 2015
               Grant Recipient, New South Wales Artists’ Grant, National Association of Visual Arts
               Finalist, Hazelhurst Art on Paper 2015
               Postgraduate Research Support Scheme Grant, Sydney University
               Finalist, 54th Fishers Ghost Award Campbelltown Arts Centre

2014   Finalist, The 38th Alice Prize, Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs
              Finalist, 2014 Bowness Photography Prize, Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne
              Finalist, 53rd Fishers Ghost Award Campbelltown Arts Centre

2013   Sainsbury Sculpture Grant
             Australian Postgraduate Award to undertake Phd, University of Sydney
             Finalist, William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize
             Recipient, AIR Taipei International Artist Residence Fellowship
             Recipient, Arts NSW Travel Grant
             Finalist, Hazelhurst Art on Paper Art Award 2013
             Finalist, Fisher's Ghost Award, 2013, Campbelltown Arts Centre
             Grant Recipient, NAVA NSW Artist’ Grant

2012 Highly Commended, 61st Blake Prize for Religious Art. S.H. Ervin Gallery, Sydney
            Highly commended, The 37th Alice Prize, Araluen Galleries, Alice Springs
            National Association for the Visual Arts NSW Artists’ Grant
            Finalist, 50th Fisher’s Ghost Art Award, Campbelltown Arts Centre
            Finalist, Muswellbrook Photographic Award, Muswellbrook Regional Arts Centre
            Semi Finalist, Moran Contemporary Photographic prize

2011   Australia Council ArtStart Grant
             Finalist, Fisher’s Ghost Art Award 2011, Campbelltown Arts Centre
             Finalist, The Substation Contemporary Art Prize, The Substation, Melbourne 

2008   The Viktoria Marinov Award in Art Postgraduate Scholarship
             Winner: Churchie National Emerging Art Award. Judges Special Mention Prize

2007  Australia Council New Work Grant
             Janet Holmes à Court Artists Grant and Visual and Craft Artists' Grant
             Finalist, Lomograpix07, Blender Gallery, Sydney. 2006
             Finalist, The 34th Alice Prize.
2003   Winner, The 52nd Blake Prize for Religious Art. Judges: Judith Carroll, Jeffrey  Kamins, Hilarie Mais               and Nick Vickers
              Finalist, Helen Lemprière Traveling Art Scholarship. Artspace
2002   Recipient, Apple Scholarship, University of New South Wales
              Finalist, 51st Blake Prize for Religious Art. Casula Power Arts House


2016   PhD candidate, University of Sydney
2015   Sessional Lecture, Australian Catholic University, Strathfield Campus
2008  - continuing Teacher, Photography / Art History, Sydney Institute TAFE
2008 -  2015 Sessional Lecturer, School of Media Arts, College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales
2011   Master of Fine Arts by Research (Media Arts), University of New South Wales
2004   Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours), University of New South Wales 
2007   Casual Lecturer, Faculty of Humanities and Education, University of Technology
1998   Diploma of Fine Arts with Distinction (Photography/Printmaking), Northern Sydney TAFE    


2018 Parsons, The Newschool, New York City
Phasmid Studios, Berlin
  Hill End Artist Residency, Bathurst Regional Gallery, New South Wales, Australia
2013   AIR Taipei International Artist Residence, Taipei Artist Village, Taiwan
2012   Taklamakan desert, China. Self-initiated residency
2011   Ambrym, Vanuatu. Self-initiated residency.         
2007   Artist in Residence, Trinity Grammar School, Sydney


Art Gallery of South Australia
The Balnaves Foundation
BresicWhitney Art Collection
The Macquarie Group Collection
Alice Spring Art Foundation Art Collection
Society of the Arts, Trinity Grammar School Art Collection, Delmar Gallery      
University of Sydney Union Art Collection, Sydney, Australia
Represented in private Collections, Australia and internationally


Conquest of Space: Sci-Fi & Art, ABC Television documentary by Dr Andrew Frost
Andrew Frost, Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart exhibition catalogue , 2014
’Dark Heart success’, Australian Arts Review, May 19, 2014
’Dark Heart art acquired by gallery’, Adelaide Independent news, 13 May 2014
Models for the afterlife, Exhibition Catalogue
Joanna Bayndrian, Wondermountain Exhibition Roomsheet, 2014
Luise Guest, 'Subverting the Sublime: Wondermountain at Penrith Regional Gallery', Daily Serving , 14 March 2014
Shireen Khalil, 'Works from an era past', Inner West Courier, 8 April 2014 Page 48
Luise Guest, 'The space between Us' — Matter and Meaning in the work of Shoufay Derz, 2013
Barbara Dowse, Artereal Gallery Exhibition essay, 2013
Andrew Frost, 'Concerns about climate change shaping new Australian art', The Guardian, 7 November 2013
Maria Tumarkin, Blake Prize opening speech notes at the Jewish museum of Australia, 2013
Dr Lindy Lee, Speculum Projects, "Phantom Limb", catalogue essay, 2013
Speculum Projects, "Phantom Limb", catalogue essay, 2013
Adrian Phoon, "Phantom limbs, family ties", 2013
Shona Kervinen, "Ties that bind", Brink - Sydney Morning Herald, (19 September 2013): 2
Professor James Arvanitakis , "Pigeon Auction" Catalogue essay, 2013
Luise Guest, 'Pigeon Auction: Suburban secrets', Daiiyserving international publication on contemporary art, 7 June 2013
Nadia de Ceglie & Rod Patterden, Blake education Kit, (Dec 2012)
Owen Leong, ‘Spirit worlds’, issue 14, Peril magazine (September 2012)
Rosemary Crumlin, 'Time and silence for meaning', Gesher, Vol. 4 No.2, pp. 27-29
Rosemary Crumlin, The Blake Book, 162-163, 2011
Rosemary Crumlin. The Spirit within Australian contemporary Art, catalogue essay, 2009
Fiona Edmonds Dobrijevich, Falling in: Poetics of Wonder, Creativity and Uncertainty Conference paper, University of technology, 2008
Twenty, Sherman galleries 1986–2006 (2006): 84
David Teh. "Half Dozen presents...Year of the Dog: Chinatown Public Art Project, Shoufay Derz", (January, 2006): 3
Barbara Messer. “Student profile”, International Research Student Prospectus – COFA, UNSW (2006):24
‘Artist case study: Shoufay Derz’, Using Learning Technologies in learning and teaching Visual Arts. CD ROM, Australian Independent schools, Sydney (2005)
Peter Sheelan AO. “The Touring Blake Exhibition”, catalogue essay, ACU National Gallery (2004): 2
Peter Hill. "Join the red dots", Spectrum - Sydney Morning Herald  (September 25, 2004): 18
Joyce Morgan. "Watch this face, Shoufay Derz", The (Sydney) Magazine - Sydney Morning Herald, Issue 11 (March 2004): 30
“Art of Questioning, Artist Shoufay Derz”, Time Out Arts - Mainly Daily (December 05, 2003): 39
Peter Sheelan AO. “Blake 2003 essay”, catalogue essay, ACU National Gallery (2003): 2
Dominique Angeloro. "Traveling circus", Metro - Sydney Morning Herald  (August 15-21, 2003): 22
Lenny Ann Low. "Blake Winner's Dark Reflection", Sydney Morning Herald (November 13, 2003): 4
Cathy Pryor. "Poetry of the rib takes out the Blake", The Australian (November 13, 2003): 4
Chris Kearney. "COFA artist takes out Blake Prize", Uniken, Issue 10 (Dec ember 2003): 7
Peter Hill. "An Art of God", Spectrum - Sydney Morning Herald (December 6-7, 2003): 10
Jo Bosben. "Student runs away with Prize", Blitz Magazine (Winter issue, 2002): 9
Louise Maral. "Black and Blake in partnership", The University of Sydney News – UniArts (Nov. 28, 2003): 7.
C Kidd. Artnotes NSW - Blake Winner, Art Monthly, Issue 166 (Dec 2003)