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Frequently asked questions

I have used non-original material in my work. How do I apply for copyright clearance?

Please see information in the Copyright guidelines for VCE Season of Excellence (Top Designs, Top Screen and Top Arts) applications (docx - 94.84kb).

If you need further information please talk to your teacher or visit the Australian Copyright Council website.

VCAA and NGV staff are not able to give legal advice and the information provided should be used as a guide only.

Note: If you do seek copyright clearance please attach either the email or letter you sent to the copyright holder and their response to your application. The panel needs to see both to consider your work.

Why are we only allowed to submit up to five photographs? I cannot show all my work in just five images.

The panel has five members and they will be able to see the quality of your work from five images. Make a selection that best represents your skills and creativity. If the panel feels that they cannot get a good sense of your work you will be contacted to supply more information, or if you are short-listed, asked to bring in your work.

If you have sculpture(s) or textiles you may want to include an image which shows the entire work and one that shows a closer view of the surface of the work. This needs to be included in the five images allowed.

Remember you are able to submit more than one application. Each application can contain up to five images.

What do you mean by submitted by this date (19 October) to be accepted?

Your online application needs to be completed by the Thursday 19 October 2017. We strongly suggest not leaving applications until the last minute, to ensure you can complete all of the requirements of the application. Give yourself lots of time – the system will get very busy.

What if I want to hand deliver my Top Arts application on Thursday 19 October?

Applications for Top Arts 2018 are online. If there are individual circumstances where online submission is not possible, please contact topartsenquiries@ngv.vic.gov.au well prior to the application deadline to discuss alternatives.

How will I know if I have been short-listed for the exhibition?

All short-listed students will be contacted by early December (this is why it is important to list student contact details rather than school details). Students who have not been short-listed will not be invited to bring in their work.

Why can't I use my school email address?

If students leave school after the VCE exams their school email is often discontinued. Email will be the main way of contacting exhibitors during event preparation so we need a personal email that will continue well into 2017.

Why are you so strict about this deadline when it is such a busy time of year for students and schools?

Thousands of applications are received and it takes time to process these and prepare them for the selection panel to view. The panel start meeting a few days after the deadline, and must work to a strict deadline to ensure works are ready for display when Top Arts opens in March 2018.

Who selects the work for Top Arts and what are the selection criteria?

The panel comprises the State Reviewer for Art, the State Reviewer for Studio Arts, a regional representative teacher, two representatives from the National Gallery of Victoria Education department, including the curator.
 Works are selected using the following criteria:

  • achieve an A or A+
  • fulfil the assessment criteria for VCE Arts or Studio Arts
  • demonstrate strong conceptual development
  •  display imaginative and individual qualities
  • demonstrate technical excellence
  • demonstrate an awareness of aesthetic considerations
  • demonstrate an awareness of past and contemporary art practices
  • have copyright clearance on all non-original material used in screen-based or other works
  • provide a range of media, themes and approaches
  • are suitable for public exhibition
  • fit exhibition constraints including space and safe weight restrictions
  • are suitable for display purposes in regard to fragility and power needs, are stable enough to be shown for duration of exhibition, for example, works on paper must be suitable for mounting, framing or pinning.

What are the important dates in the Top Arts selection process?

Applications close Thursday, 19 October 2017
Shortlisted students are notifiedMonday, 13 November 2017
Bring in day (shortlisted students deliver their work to VCAA offices in Coburg)Monday 4 and Tuesday 5 December 2017 (to be confirmed)
Notification of outcome of final shortlisting process By Tuesday, 16 January 2018
Collection of shortlisted works not selected for exhibitionTuesday, 23 January 2018
Top Arts launchThursday, 22 March 2018 (TBC)
Collection of exhibited works from Top Arts space Wednesday, 18 July 2018 (TBC) and Thursday, 19 July 2018 (TBC)