AGAC 2023 Adjudicators

AGAC 2023 Adjudicators

AGAC 2023 Adjudicators:

Robert Thirtle ARTi Gallery Adjudicator

Robert Thirtle

This artist was born in the seventies in the Eastern Free State, South Africa. Robert Thirtle’s artistic journey began with formal education at the Sheffield School of Interior Design in New York, completing the education in 2004. Following his studies, Robert Thirtle contributed significantly to major projects during his tenure at an international Architecture firm as an Interior Designer, honing his artistic skills in diverse settings and culminating in a deep exploration of various artistic mediums.

From figure studies and portraits to landscape paintings, Robert’s portfolio reflects a mastery of various mediums, revealing a dynamic and evolving artistic identity, recently expanded to incorporate digital art.

Robert Thirtle boasts a rich exhibition history, participating in numerous solo and group exhibitions, participating in innovative projects, showcasing his evolving artistic expressions.

Continually pushing boundaries, Robert’s artistic odyssey is underscored by an unwavering commitment to self-discovery and creative excellence. Notably, he founded the ARTi Gallery in the North West Province, a cornerstone of his investment in art and art education. Robert Thirtle actively conducting art workshops at the ARTi Gallery, shaping the next generation of artistic minds. The AGAC, a natural outcome of this commitment, this is just the beginning!


Maria ARTi Gallery Adjudicator



Maria Magdalena Oosthuizen was born in Paarl (Western Cape) South Africa in 1972. She currently resides in Mossel Bay, a small coastal town in South Africa, with her husband, and three children.

Maria is a qualified hairdresser.

She completed a course in photography in London, and completed a diploma course in Business Management, as well as website design in South Africa.

Maria always had a fascination with God’s creation, and a love for drawing since childhood.

In 2005, Maria started painting full time. Within the first two years, her works were exhibited in six very well-known galleries nationwide, and she became their top selling artist!

Today Maria is well-known for her beautiful God-centered paintings that have captured the hearts of many.

Here are only a few exhibitions that Maria has showcased her work: 

2007 - Solo Exhibition – At a Private Residence organised by Elisabeth Ackermann.
2008/06/06 - 2008/06/08 - Group Exhibition – Wacky Wine Festival – Robertson.
2008/03 – Solo Exhibition – Mosselbay Art Gallery Opening – Mossel Bay
2008 - Solo Exhibition – AbsolutArt Gallery, Willowbridge, Belville
2009/08/06 - 2009/08/07 – Solo Exhibition at Canola Festival, in association with Kunstehuijs Art
AVG USA Fine Artist
2009 – Featured Artist – The Showroom Art Gallery
2009 - Solo Exhibition – AbsolutArt Gallery,
2010 – Solo Exhibition - KKNK (Klein Karoo Arts Festival) in Oudshoor
2010 – Solo Exhibition – Volksblad Arts festival in Bloemfontein,
2011 - Solo Exhibition – Prince Albert, Western Cape. Organised by the CWAA (Cape Woman's Agricultural Association, an affiliate of the ACWW (Associated Country Women of the World)) in Prince Albert. - Awarded Artist of the Year award. 
2011 – Solo Exhibition - KKNK (Klein Karoo Arts Festival) in Oudshoorn


Daniel Tladi ARTi Gallery Adjudicator 

Daniel Tladi

Self-taught artist, Daniel Tladi, grew up in Khuma Township in the North West and discovered his talent for art in Grade 3. He started painting full time after Matric and used library books to learn various techniques. Daniel has been fortunate to be mentored by internationally acclaimed artist, Daniel Novella.

In 2012 Daniel joined a local art club, “Art Alive” and in 2014 he also participated in a creative workshop held by Matlosana Lighthouse Youth Organisation where Daniel Novella was also speaker. In 2016 he became a member of the “Artist Under the Sun” association and in 2017 he was part of a touring exhibition which was a project of the Mmabana Art, Culture and Sports Foundation.

Some of Daniel Tladi’s achievements include Best Upcoming Artist by Art Alive, commissions by the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture and the Klerksdorp Museum. In 2014 he won the Mmabana Calabash Art Competition and in 2015 he attained the Top 5 in the Creative arts Growth and Sustainability Competition. In 2018 and 2019, Daniel Tladi was selected as one of the contemporary artists to showcase his work at the Oliewenhuis art Museum by the Bank of South Africa.

Adjudication Criteria: 

The three adjudicators have made use of a scoring system by viewing every artwork. There was no name on the artworks, only the order number, so there was no means of knowing the age, race, location or gender of the artist. The judging was completely blind and fair.

After selecting a Top 100 from almost 700 entries, the competition adjudicators felt that in order to include and encourage artists in the earlier stages of their creative journey, to then include two additional categories: Primary School and High School. These categories were judged independently from the overall entries. The Digital Art Category is also judged independently as a sub-category. There were however a few artworks by high school students that were selected in the initial round, making the Top 100, Top 50 and Top 25. Achieving a Top 25/50/100 position is ultimately a higher level of achievement than going into the subcategories.

The criteria for scoring:

1. Interpretation and theme and adhering to the criteria.

2. Composition, presentation and visual effect.

3. Technical skill and use of medium.

4. Colour balance and lighting.

5. The degree of imagination, creativity and individuality. Expression is unique and fully developed to present fresh concepts in ways that are imaginative and inventive

The competition executives would like to express that there were an immense amount of excellent artworks and would have loved to include more finalists. Those who did not achieve Top 25/50 or 100 should continue to make art and enter competitions.