From an outstanding field of more than 3,000 entries, culminating in a shortlist of 39 exceptional finalists, the Winner and Highly Commended entries for this year’s National Photographic Portrait Prize (NPPP) have been announced.
The Winner of the 2019 National Photographic Portrait Prize has been presented to Alana Holmberg for her portrait titled Greta in her Kitchen, 36 weeks, while the Highly Commended Award has been presented to Alex Vaughan for her portrait Sumbawa pride – life on a boat with eleven kids.
Dr Christopher Chapman, Senior Curator at the National Portrait Gallery and co-judge of this year’s Prize, said the portrait of Greta captures an intimate moment. “This unconventional portrait is quiet and contemplative.” he said.
“The judges agreed that a compelling portrait photograph could be one that conveys a reflective moment experienced by many. The quality of light, the composition of the image and the subtle communication of the narrative combine to create an inner world.”
Dr Chapman characterised Vaughan’s Highly Commended entry as a magical instant that conveys playfulness, barely-contained chaos, and a quiet moment between mother and child amidst an unruly young family. “The judges agreed that this is a joyous family portrait,” said Dr Chapman.
“Both images possess a cinematic quality. The judges felt strongly that both portraits allude to the ways in which family connections grow, and the photographs speak to the variety of experiences of motherhood.”
Joining Dr Chapman as judges for this year’s National Photographic Portrait Prize was Anne O’Hehir – Curator of Photography at the National Gallery of Australia, and Hoda Afshar – an Iranian-born Melbourne-based photographer who won the NPPP in 2015.
Ms Holmberg will receive a $30,000 cash prize and $22,000 worth of technical equipment courtesy of Canon, while Ms Vaughan will receive an EIZO monitor valued at over $3,000. Earlier in the week, Elizabeth Looker was announced as the winner of the Art Handlers’ Award for her portrait A Calm So Deep – who will received $2,000 cash thanks to IAS Fine Art Logistics, and return shipping of her artwork after the regional tour.
Visitors to the exhibition will also have the chance to vote for their favourite entry in the People’s Choice Award – which will be announced on Monday 25 March 2019. The winner will receive a Broncolor Siros 800 L Outdoor Kit 2 valued at more than $7,000, thanks to SUNSTUDIOS. One lucky voter will win a hotel package courtesy of Crowne Plaza Canberra.
National Photographic Portrait Prize 2019
National Portrait Gallery, King Edward Terrace, Parkes (Canberra)
Exhibition continues to Sunday 7 April 2019
For more information, visit: www.nppp.portrait.gov.au for details.
Image: Alana Holmberg, Greta in her Kitchen, 36 weeks, 2018 (detail)