The Portia Geach Memorial Award is Australia's most prestigious art prize for portraiture by women artists. Sometimes referred to as the female Archibald Prize, the Portia Geach Memorial Memorial Award is given annually "… for the best portraits painted from life of some man or woman distinguished in Art, Letters or the Sciences by any female artist resident in Australia during the twelve months preceding the closing date for entries".
My entry is titled' What Remains', a portrait of Australian author Denise Leith.
Denise is the author of 'Bearing Witness: The Lives of War Correspondents and Photojournalists', and 'The Politics of Power'.
The interviews she conducted for these books took her all over the world to the scenes of wars, massacres and horrific violations of human rights. From this research came Denise's first novel, 'What Remains'. The title comes from the story of Pandora's box. When all the evils of the world were unleashed there remained one small creature at the bottom of the box; hope.
Several years ago Denise was involved in a near fatal car accident. Her whole outlook on life became one of uncertainty. No only the question of whether she herself would live, but of what still held meaning in life, what was worth living for.
Denise's strength in adversity and refusal to become cynical in the face of injustice, and her continual quest to understand life and do meaningful work in times of global uncertainty are an inspiration.
I hope that my portrait captures both her fragility and her strength.
I have woven in to the portrait references to the Pandora myth.
Portia Geach Memorial Award 2018 - 12 Oct 2018 until 02 Dec 2018
S.H. Ervin Gallery: Watson Road, Observatory Hill (The Rocks) Sydney
Open Tuesday - Sunday 11AM-5PM. Closed Mondays & Public Holidays. Ph: (02) 9258-0173.
News - Semi Finalist- Doug Moran National Portrait Prize
The same portrait of Denise Leith was also chosen as a semi finalist in the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize 2018.
The Doug Moran National Portrait Prize (DMNPP) has encouraged both excellence and creativity in contemporary Australian portraiture by asking artists to interpret the look and personality of a chosen sitter, either unknown or well known.
Unfortunately I had to make a choice to remain in the running for the Moran and lose my place in the Portia Geach, or withdraw from the Moran. I decided to stay with the Portia Geach as I have never been hung in it before, and I have been a Moran Finalist once before, in 2010.
Next year I will be sensible and not enter the same portrait in two prizes!
To see details on the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize 2018 go to Moran Prizes.
For any other information, further details on the works, or sizes and prices please contact the artist.
News - Exhibition
I am part of a four person exhibition at the Fellia Melas Gallery, 2 Moncur St, Woollahra, 2025.
The exhibition opening is from 2-4 pm on Saturday 22 September 2018 and will run until the 15th October.
My works for the show feature surreal-looking flowers in a landscape setting. Also available in the stockroom are some works from previous exhibitions and a study for the body of work I am planning for 2019, based on dolls and puppets.
For any other information, further details on the works, or sizes and prices please contact the artist or Fellia Melas Gallery.