Art Wednesday

Portrait paintings: Archibald Prize

The Archibald Prize is regarded as the most important portraiture prize in Australia. It was first awarded in 1921 and won £400.  Today the winning artist receives $50 000 (Aus/USA).  Below are my nine favourites, interestingly I picked 8 portraits of women/girls and only 1 males - this was not intentional at all, I just happen to like these.  The final list of paintings can be found in the link at the bottom of this page - some I did not like at all.   The ones I selected are not normally ones that win - so I doubt any of these will be winners.

Jessica by Thomas Macbeth
The Country's Woman by Barbara Tyson
Self portrait by Pam Tippett
Professor Penny Sackett, Astronomer and Physicist by Andrew Mezei
(doesn't this one remind you of Vermeer)
Dr Anne Lewis, OA by Angus McDonald
Portrait of Robyn Nevin by Christopher McVinish
White Cocoon by Matthew Doust
Portrait of a seated woman by Marcus Callum
Richard Roxburgh by Alexander McKenzie

Link to the full 43 portraits (warning: some photos may offend and are not suitable for young children)



  1. Wow...incredible! Thanks for sharing! xxx

  2. Todays trivia! Nora Heysen, the daughter of Hans Heysen, was the first woman artist to win the Archibald prize.

  3. The first one and the last look SO realistic!! You could mistake them for photos! I wish I was good enough to enter the competition, and nice little prize like that would come in handy!!!!!!! ;)

  4. Nick, really, I didn't know that- thanks for telling me.

  5. So interesting Jo - these are all wonderful photos. I will check the site out - I cant wait to see all the entries!



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