Creativity, innovation, wit and style will ideally combine with newsworthiness and artistic technique for the winner of the best cartoon award.
The Sydney Morning Herald
“Kevin cleans up”
The week after Kevin Rudd defeated Julia Gillard in the June 2013 Labor leadership ballot, Cathy Wilcox noted Rudd resuming authority and wiping away every trace of his ousted rival. Her cartoon is spare, and her linework so efficient that she only needs a single red squiggle to evoke Rudd’s former nemesis. With so few words she encapsulates what she describes as “Rudd’s particular fastidiousness, his obsessive and pathological need to be the only one in the picture.”
Wilcox has drawn cartoons and illustrations for many publications, drawing for The Sydney Morning Herald regularly since 1989, and more recently for The Sun-Herald. She has illustrated children’s books and has published two collections of cartoons, Throw Away Lines and The Bad Guys Are Winning. Wilcox has won several Stanley Awards and the 2009 National Museum of Australia’s Political Cartooning Award. She previously won a Walkley for best cartoon in 2007.
Cathy Wilcox’s work was an obvious standout in this year’s cartoon category. The illustration brilliantly captured the poisonous dynamics of Labor’s leadership contest. The work was sparse and simple and cut-through and funny. It captured the zero-sum game of the Rudd/Gillard battle with great precision, style and wit; and it portrayed something of the personalities of the key protagonists with economy and insight.
“Kevin’s same sex marriage”
Rudd changed his stance on gay marriage as he revved up his campaign at the Labor leadership. In a polished, perfectly drawn cartoon, Knight wonders if it was finding the perfect man – himself – that turned Rudd.
Referencing Greek mythology and nimbly capturing lingering suspicions around Rudd as leader, Leak’s cartoon proved prophetic.