By Jamie Salter and Tyler Wright
The Emerald Arts Society held the official opening of the second John Dudley Portrait Prize art exhibition at the Hills Hub in Emerald on the evening of Friday 22 July.
The opening was a great success with around 70 people in attendance, Emerald Arts Society president Glenn Hambleton said.
“There was a real buzz of excitement in the room with many of the exhibiting artists and their sitters eagerly awaiting the judges’ decision,” Glenn said.
There were 57 entries in this year’s exhibition hanging in the Hills Hub upstairs gallery.
Cardinia Shire Council was thanked for supporting the Emerald Arts Society with a grant to hold the exhibition.
Nick Dudley, son of the late John Dudley, was also in attendance with the Dudley family – the sole sponsor of the event and committing to another four years of sponsorship.
This will enable the Emerald Arts Society to keep the exhibition growing.
The calibre of entries was extremely high, and the invited judge Cathy Van Ee had a very difficult job in choosing the top 10 finalists and then the overall winner, Glenn said.
Cathy chose local artist Janine Good for her painting titled ‘A Day In The Life – Professor Damian Kingsbury’.
“One of the pleasing things was that we had entries come in from other states as well and that two from NSW were finalists. Our aim is to grow this VIP exhibition honouring the late John Dudley nationally and make it one of the most important portrait prizes in Australia,” Glenn said.
John Dudley was president of the Emerald Arts Society before he passed away.
“He was involved in different art groups around the community and beyond. This John Dudley exhibition is showcasing the ‘Portraits of Emerald’ to commemorate him,” Emerald Arts Society committee member Wendy Lindrea said.
The work of the 10 finalists will continue to be exhibited at the Hills Hub until 14 August and will then be moved to the Cardinia Cultural Centre where they will be on exhibited until 18 September.
The Emerald Arts Society was extremely pleased with the attendance and will continue to use the facilities going forward.
This venue has already been booked for the Annual Arts Exhibition being held in October/November over the Melbourne Cup long weekend.