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Record entries for country art prize

Monday, 17th October, 2011

COUNTRYSCAPES: MP John Williams with past entrant Albert Woodroffe and his painting “Modern Air”. COUNTRYSCAPES: MP John Williams with past entrant Albert Woodroffe and his painting “Modern Air”.

The Countryscapes art competition continues to grow in popularity and this year it has attracted the most entries in its history.

Sixty artists from country NSW have made the shortlist for the $35,000 Essential Energy Art Prize for Landscape Painting. 

The record shortlist was selected from a quality and diverse field of entries, most of them from the Far North Coast and Central Western regions, the company said. 

Now in its ninth year, Countryscapes continues to grow in stature as it raises the profile of regional artists and their work. 

Essential Energy’s Managing Director, Terri Benson, said the standard of this year’s entries had surpassed expectations. 

“Countryscapes is a unique community partnership that builds on Essential Energy’s investment in the power network and local jobs by contributing to the sustainability of regional areas,” Ms Benson said. 

“The annual Art Prize showcases artistic talent from all corners of the State, while also celebrating the diversity of the regional landscapes across Essential Energy’s network area.” 

The final 60 artworks were selected by Australian artists Victoria Lobregat and Trevor Weekes, accompanied by Maitland Regional Art Gallery Cultural Director, Joe Eisenberg OAM, and Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Director, Richard Perram. 

Celebrated Sydney painter and academic, Ian Grant, will select the 2011 winner. 

Since its launch, more than 3,600 artists have entered the art prize, producing work that has been applauded by some of the country’s most acclaimed artists from Peter Kingston and Georgina Pemberton, to Tim Storrier and Suzanne Archer. 

Bathurst Regional Art Gallery is hosting the 2011 competition and the winner will be announced on 24 November. 

Finalists will be exhibited at the Bathurst gallery from 25 November to January 15. 

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