• Natasha Walsh wins Kilgour Prize 2018 with self-portrait
    03 Aug

    Natasha Walsh wins Kilgour Prize 2018 with self-portrait

    Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes has announced that Sydney-based artist Natasha Walsh is the recipient of the KILGOUR PRIZE 2018 for her intimate and delicate self-portrait Within the Studio (self-portrait) 2017.

    The prize is Newcastle Art Gallery’s prestigious annual award for figurative and portrait painting and one of Australia's most lucrative art prizes.

    The highly competitive award includes a $50,000 cash prize for the winning artist and a $5,000 People's Choice Award voted most popular by the public, funded by the bequest of artist Jack Noel Kilgour.

    Walsh was announced as the 2018 winner at the launch of the KILGOUR PRIZE 2018 exhibition at Newcastle Art Gallery on Friday 3 August.

    The exhibition showcases the 30 finalists, and is on display from 4 August - 21 October 2018.

    Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said that the City of Newcastle is proud to have an annual national prize of this stature housed at Newcastle Art Gallery.

    “The diversity and quality of the entries is impressive each year and the 2018 entrants are no exception. The reputation of the Kilgour Prize continues to grow, with the Prize attracting a large number of entrants and a significant audience to the gallery.

    “I congratulate Ms Walsh on joining a prestigious list of accomplished artists to have taken out the Kilgour Prize.”

    Newcastle Art Gallery Director Lauretta Morton said The Kilgour Prize encourages Australian artists to pursue - and to push the boundaries of - portraiture and figurative painting.

    Each year, the three-judge panel includes the gallery director and  two independent guest judges - this year's guest judges are Judith Blackall, curator and manager, National Art School Gallery Sydney, and local artist and educator Matthew Tome, head teacher at Newcastle Art School, Hunter TAFE.

    The judges noted a striking range of subject matter, size and medium within this year's entries, with many unique interpretations of 'portrait and figurative painting.' This year's selected works were also varied in scale and composition, with entries from right across Australia.

    "The judges commented about Natasha's oil on marble painting as an exquisite little treasure - a very delicate portrait by a dedicated artist," said Morton. "She has truly captured herself and she makes great use of the whole space, whereas some artists can have more real estate but not use it as effectively."

    Walsh completed a Masters in Fine Art at the National Art School in Sydney last year. This is her first time entering the KILGOUR PRIZE and her work has been selected three times as a finalist in the Archibald Prize.

    Natasha Walsh explains that her painting came about after she was secluded in her 'suitcase sized studio' for several months, where she was exploring the nature of the self-portrait.

    "Beginning to feel quite trapped within this self-reflecting space, I conceived of this painting where my painted self is likewise trapped within the studio which has folded in on itself inside a convex lens," said the artist.

    People's Choice Award

    In addition to the overall prize, the KILGOUR PRIZE 2018 competition includes a People’s Choice Award of $5,000. Visitors can vote for the People's Choice Award at the Gallery until Wednesday 3 October 2018 and the winner will be announced Monday 8 October 2018.

    The KILGOUR PRIZE 2018 exhibition is on at Newcastle Art Gallery from 4 August - 21 October 2018

    Entry is free and photography is permitted.

    Critic's Choice: from the collection

    Displayed alongside the KILGOUR PRIZE 2018 is the exhibition CRITICS' CHOICE: from the collection featuring works of art selected from the Gallery's collection by Newcastle arts writers John Barnes and Jill Stowell.

    On display from 4 August - 21 October 2018, the exhibition provides a rich history of painting the human figure and a fresh and unanticipated view into the Gallery's collection.

    "Almost every major Australian artist since the start of the 19th century is represented by quality works in Newcastle Art Gallery's collection, so we saw this as an opportunity to dig deep to find seldom-seen paintings that reflect the constantly changing and evolving approaches to portraying the human figure," said John Barnes.

    More information on the current year's exhibition:

    Kilgour Prize FAQs, history and information about Jack Noel Kilgour:

    About the winning artist

    Born in Darlinghurst in 1994, Natasha Walsh is a young emerging artist currently based in Sydney.
    She graduated with a Masters in Fine Art (Painting) from the National Art School in 2017.

    In addition to winning the Kilgour Prize 2018, Walsh was recognized with the Emerging Artist Prize in the Mosman Art Prize 2015 and she has been a finalist in multiple years for the Archibald Prize, the Kilgour Prize, the Mosman Art Prize and the Waverley Art Prize.

    2018 Finalists 

    Geoffrey Breen
    Filippa Buttitta
    Rachel Coad
    James Drinkwater
    Sarah Gosling
    Jeannine Grey
    David Griggs
    Craig Handley
    Jacqueline Hennessy
    Cliff Hosking
    Peter Lankas
    Fiona Lowry
    Marie Mansfield
    Steve May
    Fiona McMonagle
    Rachel Milne
    Alice Palmer
    Amanda Penrose Hart
    Lori Pensini
    Rodney Pople
    Glen Preece
    Jordan Richardson
    Michael Simms
    Anthony Slater
    Peter Smeeth
    Loribelle Spirovski
    Susan Sutton
    Mark Tweedie
    Natasha Walsh
    Anthony Williams

  • Directors for Newcastle Art Gallery and Museum
    28 Mar

    Directors for Newcastle Art Gallery and Museum

    Newcastle City Council has announced the appointment of a Director for the Newcastle Art Gallery and a Director for the Museum, as part of its new organisation design. Lauretta Morton is Newcastle Art Gallery's first female Gallery Director in the institution's history.
  • Elisabeth Cummings retrospective exhibition
    06 Mar

    Elisabeth Cummings retrospective exhibition

    A retrospective exhibition of Elisabeth Cummings' work is now on at Newcastle Art Gallery. Elisabeth Cummings: interior landscapes will be on display until the end of April and entry is free.
  • Art Collection continues to come out of the shade
    07 Feb

    Art Collection continues to come out of the shade

    Newcastle Art Gallery continues to showcase its significant collection with the opening of GRISAILLE: Shades of grey from the collection.

    Often a supporting act to more eye catching hues, grey is taking centre stage in this exhibition. The French word ‘Grisaille’ is an art theory term for the practice of using a colour palette restricted to grey. GRISAILLE explores the often discordant qualities we attribute to grey - simultaneously associated with tedium, absence and banality, but also elegance, neutrality and calm.

    The previous exhibition PAINTING MEMORY: From the collection, which closed after the Australia Day long weekend, was visited by almost 15,000 people and featured some of the Gallery's most well known and loved paintings. By comparison, GRISAILLE could be viewed as an eclectic and intriguing selection which allows the Gallery to demonstrate the breadth and depth of the collection, which currently holds more than 6,300 works of art and continues to grow.

    "Some of the works of art in GRISAILLE have not been previously displayed," said Lauretta Morton, Gallery Manager. "It is exciting to showcase them for the public to view and enjoy".

    A diverse range of artists is included in GRISAILLE, including John Brack, William Delafield Cook, Noel Counihan, James Gleeson, Frank Hinder, Max Linegar, Bea Maddock, Mike Parr and Fred Williams, as well as local artists Brett McMahon, Claire Martin and Nigel Milsom.

    In order to accentuate the exhibition, the Gallery has partnered with a local event company - Singles Events Newcastle - to present a Singles Mixer inspired by the concept of 'monochrome'.

    "The prefix 'mono' means 'single' or 'one," said Lauretta Morton. "The singles mixer is part of a bigger strategy of engaging with new audiences - locals who may not have had the opportunity to visit the Gallery and enjoy its collection before."

    Open until 8pm on Friday 23 February, visitors can enjoy after-hours access to the exhibitions, live music and stand-up comedy. Entry to the Gallery is free and all are welcome to drop in. Tickets to the Singles Mixer are $10 and must be pre-purchased. The singles event will be held concurrently with the Gallery's existing after hours program, Last Fridays.

    GRISAILLE: Shades of grey from the collection 3 February - 11 March 2018
    Also on display: EVERYTHING CHANGES: Tim Maguire 2002 - 2017 Closes 18 February 2018

    Related Events:

     Last Fridays

    Free, Friday 23 February & the last Friday of every month (except December), open until 8pm.
    More information:
    (Note: Last Fridays March will not be held as this date is Good Friday. The Gallery will be closed.)

    Enjoy after-hours access, live music and a drink at our pop up bar while you explore the Gallery for an evening of ‘mono’ (meaning 'single' or 'one') inspired programming.

    Local music by: solo singer-guitarist Mark Wells (pictured) (5-7pm)
    Exhibition micro-talk: Tobias Spitzer, Technical Officer, Newcastle Art Gallery (from 7pm)
    Stand-up comedy: Jarrod Moore from the UoN Comedy Club (short set after 7pm)
    Plus: Uno, checkers and solitaire game action.

    Exclusive Singles Mixer in the Gallery sculpture garden

    Presented in partnership with SEN Events as part of LAST FRIDAYS
    $10 per person, Friday 23 February, from 6:00 - 8:30pm
    Tickets available:

    GRISAILLE: Shades of grey from the collection sets the perfect backdrop to a Singles Mixer night - for nothing these days is simply black and white, but rather, many shades of grey.

    Come dressed in black, white and grey and enjoy an exhibition which celebrates the elegance and complexity of a mono (meaning ‘single’ or ‘one’) colour palette, as you mingle with other singles. Exclusive ticketed event.

  • New tech to explore Art Gallery online
    22 Jan

    New tech to explore Art Gallery online

    An interactive, high-definition walk-through of the gallery and some of its most famous works of art is now live online to help educate the community about art and display the collection to a wider audience. 
  • Tim Maguire exhibition at Newcastle Art Gallery is cinematic in scale; romantic in nature
    09 Nov

    Tim Maguire exhibition at Newcastle Art Gallery is cinematic in scale; romantic in nature

    A major survey exhibition by the internationally recognised artist Tim Maguire will be on display at Newcastle Art Gallery throughout summer - filling the gallery with large scale, incredibly detailed paintings. 
  • Much-loved works from Newcastle
    23 Oct

    Much-loved works from Newcastle's collection on display for summer

    From Margaret Olley to Brett Whiteley, Rupert Bunny to Grace Cossington Smith - 36 of the "greatest hits" from the Newcastle Art Gallery collection - will be on show in the exhibition PAINTING MEMORY: From the collection.
  • Touching portrait of everlasting love wins  KILGOUR PRIZE 2017 People
    30 Sep

    Touching portrait of everlasting love wins KILGOUR PRIZE 2017 People's Choice

    A tender and colourful portrait of 89 year old Ken and 90 year old Betty's brightly smiling eyes peering over cups of coffee has won the hearts of voters in this year's KILGOUR PRIZE 2017 People's Choice Award at Newcastle Art Gallery. 
  • Between dream and earth celebrates the life and art of Mazie Karen Turner
    31 Aug

    Between dream and earth celebrates the life and art of Mazie Karen Turner

    MAZIE KAREN TURNER: Between dream and earth celebrates the life and art practice of Newcastle artist Mazie Karen Turner (1954-2014) opening at Newcastle Art Gallery on Saturday 2 September.
  • MONTAGES: The Full Cut, 1999 – 2015 at Newcastle Art Gallery
    31 Aug

    MONTAGES: The Full Cut, 1999 – 2015 at Newcastle Art Gallery

    MONTAGES: The Full Cut, 1999 – 2015 features the full suite of eight montage films by internationally recognised filmmaker Tracey Moffatt and her long time collaborator Gary Hillberg.
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