Entries open for next portrait award

Kate Arthur with her winning work from 2017, ‘Genna & Felix
Kate Arthur with her winning work from 2017, ‘Genna & Felix

Entries have opened for the 2019 Sanlam Portrait Award, which celebrates and showcases the best original portrait artwork in SA. Sponsored by Sanlam Private Wealth, in partnership with Rust-en-Vrede Gallery, the award offers a significant monetary prize of R100,000. The closing date for entries is May 31 2019.

Last year’s Sanlam Portrait Award attracted a staggering 1,438 entries. Cape Town artist Kate Arthur, originally from East London, took the top prize for her oil painting titled Genna & Felix. Another entry by Arthur – a work titled Kwena – also made it into the top five portraits. Two Port Elizabeth artists, Jennifer Ord and Lwando Lunika, also reached the top 40 selection, and saw their works included in the national travelling exhibition that made a turn at the Bay’s GFI Art Gallery in May.

The competition is open to artists aged 18 and older who are permanently resident in SA. All works will be judged anonymously by a panel of independent judges, again to be convened by Stefan Hundt, curator of the Sanlam Art Collection. In contrast to previous years, entries for the first round of adjudication must be submitted digitally at www.rust-en-vrede.com. Postal entries will not be accepted. Entries may only be submitted from May 1 to 31 and no late entries will be accepted.

The 2019 Sanlam Portrait Award will be the fourth since the biennial competition was launched in 2013, when KwaZulu-Natal artist Heather Gourlay-Conyngham took the top prize for her nude portrait titled A Young Man. The 2015 winner was Cape Town artist John Pace, for After the Match.

Hundt said the outstanding quality and standard of entries received in previous years’ competitions was testament to the range and depth of talent SA had to offer. “We are looking forward to seeing entries that push beyond the normal and are accepted for the 2019 competition.”

For further information on the Sanlam Portrait Award and competition rules, visit www.rust-en-vrede.com