The People’s Choice – Ann Cape wows audiences for her second win

In an exciting turn of events, Ann Cape has won the Portia Geach People’s Choice Award for the second time with a portrait of her mother, Artist Gwenna Thatcher.

Untitled-1Ann’s moving portrait, The last portrait of my mother (Gwenna Thatcher) was painted just before Cape’s mother passed away, at the age of 96.

“My mother was the first in our family to be a painter, three generations followed in her footsteps at the National Art School.  She led a very flamboyant and interesting life.  Unfortunately at the age of 96 she recently died, and this work represents her in a quieter time, near the end of her adventure”, said Cape.

This is the first time a mother and daughter have won both awards, with Ann’s daughter Sophie Cape was awarded the Portia Geach Memorial Award for her portrait of actor Daniel Whylie, who is currently starring in the Water Diviner.

The inclusion of three generations of Cape’s – Gwenna, Ann and Sophie – added a poignant note to the Award this year.

Established as a celebration of female Australian artists by Florence Kate Geach in 1961 in memory of her sister Portia Geach, the prestigious portrait prize aims to aid the development of female artists in this country.

This dual win by the Cape’s, and their generational artistic legacy shared between grandmother, mother and daughter is a perfect realisation of this award and its enduring influence.

The Portia Geach Memorial Award
The National Trust 
S.H Ervin Gallery

Image: Ann Cape, The last portrait of my mother, (Gwenna Thatcher) oil on linen, 120 x 90cm
Courtesy the artist and the National Trust, S.H. Ervin Gallery 

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