'Aimee' Janet Leith, 2019 Oil on Canvas
North East Artisan’s Biennial portrait prize “In Your Face” closed on Saturday 31st August after a month of high visitation, complementing events and interesting debates.
With its closure comes the announcement of “The People’s Choice” award, collated from the many votes of visitors to the exhibition. The $500 prize has been comprehensively won by Janet Leith with her portrait of a young woman “Aimee”.
Janet’s practice as an artist is centred in Wangaratta, although she has strong links to Benalla, both at North Eastern Artisans and Benalla Art Gallery.
“Aimee” is a refreshing and vivid portrait of a young woman moving from the left to right side of the picture whilst engaging the viewer directly with her eyes. Visitors obviously shared the positive elements the portrait represented.
The First Prize of the In Your Face Portrait Prize was shared by Frank Burgers’ “Mum”and Tanya Tabone’s “ Uncle Fred, Pumpkin Head”. Selected by the official judge Debora Halpern, both portraits represented members of the artist’s family, honestly depicted.
In Your Face is rapidly developing into the exhibition prize to watch in the North East, with a wide selection of styles and subjects exhibited. It is a reliable measure of the people’s pulse in image and art.
North East Artisans thanks the artists, judge and organising committee and especially the sponsors and public, who make the prize come alive. We can’t wait till the 2021 prize….
'In Your Face' NEA Portrait Prize 2019 - joint winners Tanya Tabone 'Uncle Fred, Pumpkin Head' and Frank Burgers 'Mum'
'Uncle Fred, Pumpkin Head' Tanya Tabone (2019)
"This digital work has been specifically created for the 2019 In Your Face Exhibition. The piece is a portrait of my Great Uncle Fred which I photographed at an event and have digitally altered to convey my impressions of him as an artistic subject.
When viewed from afar, this is a realistic photographic portrait of my uncle who always pulls silly faces. It is only upon closer inspection that you can see a blurring of the details of his likeness. This demonstrates how age blurs the line between life and the memories we hold.
His eyes and face capture his fun, strong personality, but the dry brush stroke softens his
features so that they jump around like a memory when you try to focus on a face you have loved."
Tanya Tabone 2019
'Mum' Frank Burgers (2019)
"I’ve been working on this painting for years. Mum is changing over time, and I am
hoping the painting will evolve into a summary of what it means to be the son of Hannie
Burgers. She has always been a strong and independent woman, and continued living on
her own when dad passes away in 2005. Before that she survived a tumour the size of a golf ball, removed from her head when she was in her late 40’s. Mum always retained a positive outlook on life. That, her generosity, and her caring nature, defines the wonderful woman she is.
She loved colour."
Frank Burgers 2019
'The In Your Face' NEA Portrait Prize 2019 exhibition is open at NEA from 10 - 4 Tuesdays to Fridays and 10 - 2 on Saturdays. to 31st August If a volunteer is available, it my also be open on Mondays from 10 to 4 pm (NEA is usually closed on a Monday)
NEA would like to acknowledge financial support towards the cost of running the 'In Your Face Exhibition' from Benalla Rural City Community Sponsorship fund and V-Line Benalla Station Community funding.
Photographs: Tanya Tabone and Janet Leith
‘In Your Face’ Portrait Prize Winners Announced
The region’s best portraits have been celebrated at the ‘In Your Face’ Portrait Prize on Friday August 2nd, 2019, with joint winners Frank Burgers for his work ‘Mum’ and Tanya Tabone for her work ‘Uncle Fred - Pumpkin Head’.
Renowned mosaic artist, Deborah Halpern, named the winners at the opening night celebration for the North East Artisans (NEA) exhibition on Friday August 2nd, 2019. The works were selected from a shortlist of 26 works of varied mediums. The Portrait Prize of $1,000 was shared between the two winners. An additional $500 People’s Choice Award will be voted on during the exhibition at NEA, which is on display until August 31st, 2019.
Mr Burgers winning artwork is an oil painting featuring his mother which has taken years to complete.
‘Mum has always been a strong and independent woman who has survived many ordeals,’ said Mr Burgers.
‘I am hoping that her positive outlook, generosity and caring nature come through in my portrait,’ said Mr Burgers.
Ms Tabone’s work is a digital artwork of her great Uncle Fred.
‘I hoped to capture my Uncle’s fun, strong personality in this piece,’ said Ms Tabone.
‘I love capturing photos that reveal the essence of someone’s character.
‘It is an honour to be selected among such a fine selection of artists and I’m very grateful to North East Artisans and Deborah Halpern for this opportunity,’ said Ms Tabone.
The exhibition is on display at North East Artisan’s Exhibition Gallery until August 31st, 2019.
Explore the In Your Face Portrait Exhibition from 10 am to 4 pm Tuesday to Friday and 10 am to 2 pm on Saturdays.
Frank Burgers teaches art classes at North East Artisans on Wednesday nights for $25 per class. Bookings can be made by contacting Frank on 0488 676 127.
Tanya Tabone offers digital portrait photography for families and individuals and can be contacted on 0447 744 663.
Source; NEA Media Release
Realizing that the 'In Your Face' NEA Portrait Prize 2019 exhibition would be more expensive to run than previous exhibitions, the Exhibitions Team sought additional funding to ease the financial burden on North East Artisans.
We would like to acknowledge funding of $500 from Benalla Rural City's Community Sponsorship July funding round and the donation of $350 from V-Line Benalla staff community fund.
With a much larger prize on offer next year for the new biennial Contemporary Art Prize, our fundraising net will need to spread further, however we are thrilled to have received these contributions in support of 'In Your Face'
Thank you so much Benalla Rural City and V-Line Benalla Station!
Benalla Street Art Wall to Wall Festival
Benalla Street Art Map
Benalla Youth Action Committee
Juddy Roller Wall to Wall
Benalla Art Gallery
Shepparton Art Museum
GANEAA (Goulburn and North East Arts Alliance)
Wangaratta Art Gallery
Benalla Camera Club
Broken River Potters
Broken River Painters
Table Top Games at NEA
Phone: 0402 563 918 (Gallery Hours)
Address: 122 Bridge Street East, Benalla, VIC 3672