Artists from Arnhem Land and the central desert region have again dominated the finalists’ field at the 27th Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award.

The 96 finalists, selected from 321 entries, were announced by the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory.

This is the first year new media entries have been included in the awards, with seven named as finalists.

Telstra Art Award curator Kate Podger says while many of the new media entries were from urban areas of Australia, there was also an entry from Arnhem Land.

‘This particular work really responds to the theme ‘Connections’ in a very personal manner,’ said Ms Podger in a statement.

Other entries in the New Media category include an artist’s work at the virtual community ‘’, as well as a range of digital images.

Telstra Chief Marketing Officer, Kate McKenzie says she is thrilled at the way the artists have enthusiastically embraced the new media category.

‘We’re pleased that Indigenous artists have a national showcase for this new form of artistic expression to celebrate their culture, beliefs and society,’ she said.

The 27th Telstra National Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander Art Award exhibition opens, and award presentations will be made, on Friday, 13 August 2010.