Local finalist

Castlemaine artist Mark Dober has been announced as a finalist in the prestigious Black Swan Prize for Portraiture in Western Australia, the third richest prize in Australia after the Archibald and Doug Moran.
Dober’s work is a self-portrait and was selected from more than 500 entries to feature in an exhibition of 40 finalists at the Art Gallery of Western Australia from October 27-November 26.
The professional artist moved to Castlemaine two years ago and is predominantly a landscape artist.
In fact, he featured in the Gallipoli Prize for a landscape entry featuring a peace cairn in the Nuggety landscape in early 2018.
“I love the local landscape, particularly around the Nuggety Hills area at Maldon. I love to paint out in the natural environment. But in the cooler months I turn to portraiture,” he said.
Dober said his self-portrait was painted from life.
“I try to get a likeness. This is difficult, but you try, for otherwise you look like someone else.
“I look intently in the mirror, I translate what I see into shapes, and patches of tone and colour. I am making a painting, and it is a record of my experience of seeing.
“The painting turns out the way it does. I don’t set out to convey a certain look or expression. In the end I may have a self-portrait with a somewhat vacant look, or an intense look, or a serene and intelligent look.
“From the several self-portraits I make I will select one that has character to enter into a prize exhibition.”
The majority of the Black Swan finalists works are self-portraits.
The winner will be announced on October 26.

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