4 September 2023

Famous Cooktown faces centre of Archies awards

| Sarah Martin
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Cooktown Art Society president Jane Dennis and volunteer Ejypt Reuben are excited for the inaugural Archies portrait awards.

MUMS, dads and local “celebrities” will be immortalised in the inaugural Cooktown Archies portrait awards, as artists vie for the yet-to-be disclosed prizemoney.

While Cooktown School of Art Society president Jane Dennis was keeping that information close, she did reveal that interest had already been strong for the competition, a local version of the famed Archibald Prize portrait award.

“We’ve had lots of interest and excitement already, and people are talking about it, which is great,” Ms Dennis said.

The Art Society has been running regular portrait workshops throughout the year, and would also be running two kids sessions in the lead-up to the Archies.

“We will put on pop-up workshops for kids on September 10 and 17, with all materials supplied,” Ms Dennis said.

“Children aged between 10 and 18 can bring a relative or someone famous in their family to be their own model.”

Ms Dennis said the awards tied in with the celebrations of 150 years of Cooktown, which occur in October.

“This award is based on the acknowledgement of Cooktown’s local community, past and present and aims to reflect the diversity of our local culture,” she said.

“Our art workshop sessions provide an array of famous and infamous locals, and these workshops will continue up until the Archies – you are welcome to join us for a workshop or choose your own local character.”

Archies entries can be in any medium, with the stipulation that models must have some current or historic connection to Cooktown, and entries must be accompanied by a short story or video.

Archies nominations are open now, and close on September 27, with the opening night and award presentations on September 30.

For more information, phone Ms Dennis on 0400 617 467 or drop into the Elizabeth Guzsely Gallery on Hope Street.

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