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Adam Portraiture Award 2020: Call for entries

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Entries for New Zealand’s most prestigious portraiture competition, The Adam Portraiture Award are now invited. Artists are encouraged to get out their brushes, find their subjects and start painting!

The award, generously sponsored by The Adam Foundation and presented by The New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te PÅ«kenga Whakaata, is one of the country’s longest running art prizes which has a major cash prize of $20,000 and national recognition and regularly tours the country.

Anyone can apply to enter this anonymously-selected biennial contest, as long as the artist is a New Zealand resident or citizen. All portraits must be painted only and subjects have to be a New Zealand resident or citizen.

Previous winners include Logan Moffat in 2018, André Brönnimann in 2016, Henry Christian-Slane in 2014, Stephen Martyn Welch in 2012, Harriet Bright in 2010, Irene Ferguson in 2008 and Freeman White in 2006.

For the first time this year a local judge will join the international judge to examine the entries and decide on the finalists and winner.

"Each year we invite a special international judge to choose both the finalists and the winners of the Adam Portraiture Award. Our international judge for 2020 is Karen Quinlan, Director National Portrait Gallery of Australia This year we have also invited Dr Lara Strongman, Chief Curator Christchurch Art Gallery to be our New Zealand judge and will bring local knowledge and context to the decision-making process. I am excited to see what’s in store for 2020," says Jaenine Parkinson, Director of New Zealand Portrait Gallery.

The winner of the competition and recipient of a $20,000 cash prize will be selected by the judges at the start of the public exhibition showcasing all finalists’ works at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery and. An additional prize of $2,500 will be awarded for the runner up alongside another $2,500 prize for the People’s Choice, awarded at the end of the Adam Portraiture Award exhibition.

Entries close at 4pm on 6 December 2019 and the winner will be announced on 26 February 2020. The exhibition will run at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te PÅ«kenga Whakata in Shed 11 on Wellington’s waterfront a from 27 February to 31 May 2020.

Entry forms and further information are available at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery or online at

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