paper on skin

Monday, 04 June 2018

The Burnie Arts Council is gearing up for the 4th biennial Betta Milk Burnie Wearable Paper Art Competition, to be held at the Burnie Regional Art Gallery at 6.30pm on Friday 15 June.

This year paper on skin opened entries to international artists. Finalists have been selected from as far away as Amsterdam and Ohio. Five Australian states are represented, with many of the artists making the journey to Burnie for the event.

Burnie City Council Mayor Alvwyn Boyd said, “This is one of Burnie’s top cultural events and Burnie City Council is very proud to support it. It has grown in popularity each time it has been held and it is very exciting that we now have international participants!”

Pam Thorne, Secretary of the Burnie Arts Council said “It’s very exciting and all the signs indicate we will have another stunning show with more than twenty finalists currently putting the finishing touches on some extraordinarily ambitious pieces.”

“A number of finalists are telling intensely personal stories through their work. There are also strong statements about topical issues like climate change. There will be both drama and beauty on the catwalk and some of the pieces are quite complex.” Pam said.

Garments must be made from at least 80% paper. Wearability is a key criterion and the suspense on the night is palpable. Judges do not make their decision until after the parade. They disappear into a private room for their ‘judges huddle’ while the audience have their own say by participating in the Public Vote Award.

Adding to the international flavour of this event, a workshop will be held over the weekend of the 16th and 17th June with New York based hanji papermaking specialist and scholar, Aimee Lee. 

“The tie-in is the durability of the hanji – an ancient Korean papermaking tradition. Aimee will be teaching manipulation techniques enabling paper to be used in a myriad of ways – including clothing!” said Pam Thorne.

The workshop will be held at Creative Paper Tasmania, where Aimee will be supported by Burnie City Council’s master Paper Maker, Darren Simpson.

In addition to the catwalk event there will be a dance performance by Reflexions Dance Studio and Wynyard-based musician and multi-media artist Telen Rodwell is responsible for the music and sound design. Once again Giovanna Simpson is bringing a team of enthusiastic students to model these amazing art pieces.


  • Betta Milk Major Award $5000
  • Friends of the Gallery Runner Up Award $1500
  • Cocoon Designs Public Vote Award $500


  • Janet De Boer OAM, Former CEO of TAFTA
  • Niecy Brown, Arts Administrator and community artist
  • Jane Haley, CEO Ten Days on the Island

Date – June 15th
Time – 6.30pm
Venue – Burnie Regional Art Gallery

Tickets available from the Burnie Arts and Function Centre Box Office – (03) 6430 5850

paper on skin is run in partnership with the Burnie Regional Art Gallery.  A selection of Aimee Lee’s pieces will be exhibited with paper on skin entries from the 22nd June – 29th July.

The Gallery  is open free to the public from 10 am to 4.30 pm weekdays and from 1.30pm to 4 pm  Saturday, Sunday and public holidays. 

For further information please contact

Communications Officer
Burnie City Council
03 6430 5716 or 0448 568 728