Portraits turn heads
THE 11th Great Southern Portrait Prize opened on Saturday at Foster’s Stockyard Gallery, on the last weekend of the Prom Coast Seachange Festival.
South Gippsland Shire Council mayor Cr Ray Argento attended with fellow councillors Alyson Skinner, Meg Edwards and deputy mayor Maxine Kiel.
Festival chair Deb Bray welcomed everyone to the third occasion when the Portrait Prize and Seachange have come together.
Prom Coast Arts Council (PCA) member Kerry Spokes gave a short history of the prize, thanked the judges and the PCA artists who run portrait workshops at schools, the Seachange committee for support, Stockyard Gallery, the exhibition hanging committee, the mayor and councillors, artists and those in attendance.
A special thank you was made to the sponsors and South Gippsland Shire Council.
Cr Argento said a visit to the Western District town of Brim to see painted silos made him realise how art could touch everyone in a town and bring visitors from far and wide.
Cr Argento invited South Gippslanders to go online and make comments on the arts in South Gippsland, and also spoke of the role council is taking on with a new take on the council’s art, culture and creative industries policy.
Judges Ros Atkins and Deb Milligan praised the younger artists’ work and were pleased to see adult and junior work shown together.
Ms Atkins acknowledged the support of schools and parents, and noted judging the junior section was difficult.
Ms Milligan spoke about the technical and compositional aspects of the artworks – mark making, space left around the subject and drew attention to the hand gestures in Tom Murray-White’s portrait, introspection in Janie Frith’s work and the fine detail in Linda Keagle’s work.
The exhibition continues until May 1 from 10am to 4pm each day. Visitors are reminded to cast their votes for the people’s choice prizes in both the open and junior sections, with vouchers for Bromley on Main café to two lucky voters, drawn at the end of the exhibition and announced in newspapers the following week.
Open section. Grand prize $1000: Tom Murray-White, I LOVE PAUL – a portrait of Paul Satchell. Second prize $500: Linda Keagle, Ouch – a portrait of Roger Keagle.
Highly commended and Packer’s Prize $100: Janie Frith, Chico – a portrait of Reuben Frith.
Junior section. First prize $100: Aaron, Foster Primary School, All about Me, a self portrait.
Packer’s Prize $50: Campbell, Tarwin Valley Primary School, Bored, a portrait of Dayne.
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