Sydney photographer scoops National Photographic Portrait Prize
Sydney-based photographer, Rob Palmer has won the 13th annual National Photographic Portrait Prize (NPPP) with his portrait of chef Josh Niland, titled The mahi-mahi, 2019. The winning image is from a series Palmer created with Niland, The Whole Fish Cookbook. Over 2,400 entries were submitted, with a total of 48 named as finalists.
Palmer is a lifestyle and food photographer, represented by FLIPP. He describes Niland as trailblazer. “Josh is reinventing what can be done with fish and – most importantly – with every part of the fish, in a huge effort to drastically reduce wastage,” Palmer said.
Of the winning work, the judges, Penny Grist (Curator, NPG), Nici Cumpston (Curator, Art Gallery of South Australia), and artist Naomi Hobson noted the portrait’s “majesty and power”, and its “painterliness and composition. The sitter’s embrace of the fish so eloquently conveys his identity as a chef,” they said.
Fashion and portrait photographer, Hugh Stewart’s his portrait of 105-year-old dancer Eileen Kramer received the Highly Commended prize. The Art Handlers' Award went to Shea Kirk for Gemma Baxter.
Rob Palmer takes home a first prize of $30,000 plus $22,000 worth of photographic equipment from Canon. Highly Commended winner Hugh Stewart collects an Eizo ColorEdge CG2730 27" monitor valued at $3,245.
NPG Director Karen Quinlan AM describes the NPPP as, “one of our most popular exhibitions, offering equal billing for amateur and professional photographers. This year we see works of astounding quality and breadth from across the nation – many pushing the boundaries of photographic portraiture, and each reflecting quintessentially Australian stories.”
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