What is the New South Wales Parliament Plein Air Prize?
This annual prize is for a work painted ‘en plein air’ by an artist of a New South Wales subject. The finalists are exhibited at Parliament House, Sydney and the winner is awarded $20,000. The winning painting enters the collection of the New South Wales Parliament.
What does ‘plein air’ mean?
The term ‘en plein air’ refers to the practice of painting out of doors, in direct engagement with nature, where the transitory effects of light can be observed and recorded. It has a history in Europe of several hundred years, the most famous exponents including Salvator Rosa and Claude Lorraine in the 17th Century and Corot and the Barbizon school painters in the 19th. In an Australian context, the Impressionists of the late 19th century, including Arthur Streeton and Tom Roberts were devoted to painting out of doors, and thus brought a new understanding of Australian light and landscape to the public through their work. Fred Williams, Australia’s great master of landscape painting in the twentieth century, used studies painted out of doors as the foundation of his work. These artists and others established a strong tradition of painting ‘en plein air’ in Australia that continues to this day.
Contemporary Australian artists paint en plein air both in the bush and the city. For many it is a private aspect of their work, rarely exhibited, which provides a complement to their studio work. For others it is their principal method of working. Australia’s climate and landscape has long proven conducive to working out of doors and continues to fascinate the public.
Who can enter the prize?
Any artist with a postal address in NSW. The artist's address, studio address or business address and NOT a post office box is required. Importantly, the work must be painted in New South Wales and relate to this State.
What are the subject requirements?
Your painting must evoke a subject found in New South Wales. It may have been painted at any time but must have been painted ‘en plein air’.
What mediums are allowed?
Acceptable mediums include those traditionally associated with the practice of "En Plein Air" painting (oil, acrylic, gouache etc.) and, to a lesser degree, the addition of contemporary art practice including collage, drawing, and other addition.
How many works can I enter?
You may enter up to two works.
What is the cost of entry?
The cost of entry is $35.00 inclusive of GST. Limit of two entries per artist.
How is the Parliament Plein Air Painting Prize judged?
The 2013 prize will have a three fold judging process. All stages will be judged by distinguished experts in Australian art appointed by the NSW Parliament Plein Air Painting Prize Committee Inc. A panel of three judges will firstly see all electronic entries, and select 70 semi-finalists. Semi-finalists shall then be notified and will deliver their works to the Parliament of NSW on the given dates, and the same panel will review and select 38 finalists to be hung in the exhibition. A separate judge will then select one winner and three highly commended works from the finalists. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
What happens to the winning work?
The winning painting of this competition is acquired as a condition of entry and joins a significant body of public artwork in the NSW Parliament Collection.
What are the size constraints?
Acceptable are any works that are no wider than 1000mm (framed) or higher than 1500mm (framed). We recognise that most works will not be that proportion.
What is an Electronic Submission?
For the the Plein Air Painting Prize 2013, all entries must be submitted electronically for the first round of judging. This will be in the form of one photograph per entry that captures the entirety of the artwork and is of sufficient quality for judging purposes. The photograph must be submitted as a .jpeg image file and be between 1-4 MB in size. For further information, please see How to Enter.
What is a Salon des Refusés?
The term Salon des Refusés, translating from French as "salon of the rejected" was ascribed to an art exhibition that took place in Paris in 1893, hanging works that had been rejected by the official Paris Salon. Today a common phenomenon which takes place alongside many art prizes worldwide, Salon des Refusés exhibitions display works that have not been chosen for the main exhibition. The 2013 Plein Air Painting Prize will be showing a Salon des Refusés for consenting Semi-Finalists who have not been selected for the main exhibition.