Opening Saturday, October 4 at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery is Australia’s most prestigious portrait award, The Archibald Prize. Often controversial, sometimes contested, this exhibition represents the pinnacle of portrait painting in Australasia showing the fabulous faces of contemporary society.

Since 1921, The Archibald Prize has brought widespread recognition to artists and sitters alike. Entrants are asked to create a portrait of a man or woman ‘distinguished’ in arts, letters, science or politics. While open to artists from across Australasia, entries are still predominantly of and by Australians.  This year’s top prize was awarded to Fiona Lowry for her portrait of architect Penelope Seidler. People’s Choice was Vincent Fantauzzo’s All that’s good in me self-portrait as son Luca.  Packing Room Prize was awarded to Tim’s Storrier’s The Member, Dr. Sir Leslie Colin Patterson, KCB AO.

See the whole host of extraordinary portraits at Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery from October 4 to November 16. MPRG, Civic Reserve, Dunns Road, Mornington. Priority bookings online: http://www.trybooking.com/89243. Information: 5975 4395. Ticket/accommodation packages: www.visitmorningtonpeninsula.org/archibald   

 ANDREA LOUISE THOMAS