Benalla Art Gallery has announced the short list of 32 entries for the Benalla Nude $50,000 non-acquisitive art prize.
The entries include a diverse mix of artists from across Australia.
Ivan Durrant, who was on the selection panel to select the short list from more than 600 entries to the prize, said: "I'm excited, no, more than that: I’m blown away by the commitment of artists to the inaugural Benalla Nude, with entries from every state and territory in Australia, both city and country.”
Mr Durrant said that amongst the 32 finalists, as well as dual Archibald winner Wendy Sharpe and high-profile painters like Juan Davila, there is a “splendid mix of lesser-publicised professionals and many freshly unknown to me, all with an equal chance of winning.”
“I don't envy the judge, Daniel Thomas AO,” Mr Durrant said. “Robert Dickerson, a very senior artist and famous Antipodean of the fifties, is a pleasing and surprising entrant: he's definitely pulled out all the stops for Benalla.
“The quality of the entries was so good we could have easily included another 150 artists as finalists without compromising any inch of standard.”
Jilian Mulally, Manager Arts Communications and Events for Benalla Rural City Council, said that she was excited to see the short list.
“I am very proud that we are going to be presenting an exhibition of such high calibre. The quality of the entries is outstanding, and the interpretations of the nude are so varied,” she said. “We have been waiting with great anticipation for the short list to be revealed, and now it is only a few short weeks until the winner is announced. It is a very exciting time for the Benalla Art Gallery, the Council, and the whole community.”
The winner of Benalla Nude 2014 will be announced on Thursday 10 April and the exhibition of the winner and other short listed entries will be on display at Benalla Art Gallery until 13 July.
Benalla Nude is being presented by the Benalla Art Gallery, which is managed by the Benalla Rural City Council.The $50,000 prize has been put forward by the Friends of the Benalla Art Gallery Inc. The Benalla Nude exhibition is supported by Tourism Victoria.
Download the short list below.