A 28-year-old Alywarr man who lives in Tennant Creek has triumphed in the National Arts and Disability Awards in Canberra this week.
Award-winning artist and illustrator Dion Beasley, who has muscular dystrophy, scooped up a $20,000 prize last night for his third book in the series 'Cheeky Dogs'.
The recipient of the 2019 Australia Council National Arts and Disability Award for an Emerging Artist, Mr Beasley is well known across the Territory as the artist behind the much-loved T-shirt brand, Cheeky Dogs.
"Dion's formal art career started in 2006 when the first Cheeky Dogs T- shirt line was launched," the Australian Council for the Arts says.
"Since then, his reputation as an accomplished visual artist has grown from strength to strength. Dion's talents are particularly remarkable given he has muscular dystrophy and is profoundly deaf.
"Dion uses his great passion for drawing (mostly country and camp dogs) as a means of communicating with others."
The first book in the series, 'Too Many Cheeky Dogs', was first published in 2013 and has since sold close to 10,000 copies.
The writer is no stranger to awards, winning the Children's Book Council of Australia's Book of the Year Award in 2017, and the Territory Read Awards in 2018 for his book 'Go Home Cheeky Animals!'.
Mr Beasley's latest book 'Cheeky Dogs: To Lake Nash and Back' was published this year in June.
"While 'Too Many Cheeky Dogs' was originally written for young children in remote areas, the book (and the two that followed) proved to have a much broader appeal, as well as becoming an invaluable teaching resource in a variety of learning areas," the Australian Council for the Arts says.
A wonderful & important night for so many reasons, but especially because of these two.— Jeremy Smith (@Jeremy_L_Smith) December 3, 2019
A pair of remarkable artists, trailblazers & generous souls who we celebrated.
Congrat’s & thanks Dion Beasley #CheekyDogs & Janice Florence #WeaveMovementTheatre@auscouncilarts#IDPWD19pic.twitter.com/PZbH8S4iEo
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