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Art Takes Centre Stage at Kenilworth Celebrates Festival

Art is about to take centre stage on the Sunshine Coast hinterland when the Kenilworth Celebrates festival kicks off on October 3 with its annual art spectacular.

In addition to Kenilworth Celebrates, art lovers will be inspired by the many local galleries and studios staging exhibitions and the Kenilworth Painting Prize (acquisitive) will attract would-be collectors and investors.

Kenilworth Arts Council President Jean Sandell said entries for the annual acquisitive art prize had come from as far south as Sydney and as far north as Mackay. Good sales of paintings at last year’s event allowed the prize money to again sit at $17,500.

Any artist in Australia can enter and entries have been received from far and wide so it is very exciting,” Mrs Sandell said.

Kenilworth Painting Prize Judge and gallery director Philip Bacon said events such as the Kenilworth Celebrates are the ideal place to start investing in art.

“As a gallery owner of course I would prefer to see homes filled with original works but there can be a perception out there good art has to be expensive,” Mr Bacon said.

“All artists have to start their career somewhere. Buying a finalist in an art competition can be a safe way of starting your collection because the art has been judged worthy to be a finalist by a number of art critics so you have been given the nod that the piece has some merit.

“Often the artists are first time entrants so the work that has gone into the piece would far outweigh the hours spent producing it – so you could go home with a wonderful find.”

Ms Sandell said many previous winners have gone on to become established artists whose pieces are valued collectables.

“Victoria Reichelt, who won the prize in 2006 with her painting The Grass is Greener, this year won the prestigious Sir John Sulman Art prize which is quite a coup,” Ms Sandell explains.

“Another winner Neil Taylor, was consistently short listed for many prestigious art awards and was a finalist for both the Tattersall’s Art Prize, and New South Wales Parliament Plein Air Painting Prize, in 2012.

“All the art is for sale so it is possible you may pick up an original work today by an artist who becomes a household name in the future. You can’t go wrong because the pieces that have been shortlisted have been judged quality art by the team of judges so if you know nothing about art at least you have been given a point in the right direction. All the pieces are authenticated with a certificate.”


The Kenilworth Celebrates art and festival runs Saturday 28th September to Saturday 5th October 2013. The free art exhibition runs from Oct 4 to 11.

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Alana Lowes

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