National Portrait Winner

Auckland artist get $15,000 award from patron Denis Adam

The well-known young Auckland artist Stephen Marty Welch received his Adam Portraiture Award, and $15,000, from the events patron, Denis Adam, at a packed opening of the national exhibition in Wellington.

Stephen edged ahead of 85 other finalists including 2010 winner, Harriet Bright, of Paekakariki.

The title of the winning self-portrait (right column) embodies the artistic and personal effort that went into the painting: It’s called ‘3 Nights, A Mirror and Loads of Coffee.’

More than 300 artists competed for the final, But in the event only 86 works were selected for the final event.

One of these portraits depicts local Mana MP Kris Faafoi in his Parliamentary office and was painted over many months by Karori artist Andrew Tristram.

Overall, the portraits cover the gamut from formal and traditional to semi-abstract — and many were notable for a relaxed technique and unusual settings.

‘Art Boy’ (right) by Wellington artist Vivienne Still, for instance, started life when Vivienne chatted to a young skateboarder on the City to Sea Bridge in the Civic Centre in the Capital and discovered he was travelling with his art portfolio…a clear case of artistic life on a skateboard.

But unfortunately local artist  Harriet Bright’s nude self-portrait ‘Getting Closer,’ did not get close enough to be one of the final six of the 86 portraits on show.

Harriet was accompanied to the portrait finals by another local artist, Kimbra Taylor, of Raumati South, who is well-known both as an art teacher and a painter.

All in all, it’s an exhibition which holds a lot of interest for residents from the Kapiti Coast — and indeed the region.




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