Kyneton artist Daniel Butterworth has been named among the 80 finalists for the 65th Blake Prize – one of Australia’s longest standing and most prestigious prizes.
His piece, titled Yes, features the artist kissing himself as his response to the recent marriage equality vote.
“I found the voting process incredibly frustrating and how backward it seemed,” he said.
“My idea was that loving yourself is no different from loving someone else. It was an important work for me and I’m proud I got it out there.”
The topical work has already received praise on social media and will be up against works selected from across the world for the coveted prize.
Finalists were carefully selected from a whopping 769 entries, a massive 30 per cent increase from 2016.
“We’re extremely excited by the number of entries this year, from so many different countries,” said Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre director Craig Donarski.
“This year’s entries came from all across the world, from Belgium, the USA, Norway, Greece, and the UK, by artists from all walks of life.”
The winner will receive $35,000, the winner of the Blake Emerging Artist Prize will also take home $6000, and the winner of the Blake Established Artist Residency will receive a one-month residency and a solo exhibition at CPAC.
The exhibition of finalists’ works will be on show at CPAC in NSW from May 12 to July 1 and will include painting, photography, sculpture, performance, installation and digital media works exploring the wider experience of religion and spirituality and all this may entail.
Daniel Butterworth has been named finalist in four artist prizes this month making it one of his most successful yet.