1 December 2020 – 21 March 2021
Room 23 | Free admission
The aim of the Zurich Portrait Prize is to showcase and encourage interest in contemporary portraiture, and to raise the profile of the long-standing and constantly evolving National Portrait Collection at the National Gallery of Ireland.
The annual competition is open to artists living on the island of Ireland, and Irish artists living abroad. The winner will receive a cash prize of €15,000, and a commission worth €5,000 to create a work for inclusion in the National Portrait Collection. There will also be two awards of €1,500 for highly commended works.
The shortlist of portraits chosen by the 2020 judging panel will be exhibited at the National Gallery of Ireland until 21 March 2021. The exhibition will then travel to our partner venue, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork, where the shortlisted works will be displayed from 17 April to 11 July 2021.
Over Heavy Seas, 2020
Oil on canvas, 100 x 100 cm
Over Heavy Seas is a portrait of the artist’s brother Luke, as he sits at their mother's kitchen table, looking at his laptop. He has lived in various far-off countries since his youth. This scene depicts a rare moment when he was on the artist’s side of the screen looking in, as opposed to on a video chat. The artist contrasts the dark lines of the sitter’s tattoo with gentle pastels and soft brushstrokes to convey the delicacy of this moment.