One of the Young Archie winners, Ava Birdie Gallagher
One of the Young Archie winners, Ava Birdie Gallagher

Art “just has to show emotion” says young winner

The Young Archie Competition has been run and won in Coffs Harbour, with kids from across the region awarded for their emotive and creative portraits of loved ones.

Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery’s Ashleigh Frost was ecstatic with the entries received from kids aged five to 18, showing skill and emotional maturity well beyond their years.

The portraits showcase the varied faces of the Coffs Coast ranging from parents and siblings, to best friends and teachers.

Each portrait tells a story of the young artist’s relationship to a person important to them.

“As the entries came in it was really emotional to get a little glimpse into children’s worlds and what was important to them. Evident across many of the works was a response to COVID including adopting a dog, spending time with grandparents and activities at home,” Ashleigh said.

2019 Archibald Winner Tony Costa with wife Jeannette Siebols and Coffs Harbour's youngest Young Archie winner, Ava Birdie Gallagher and her mum Jahnavi Swift.
2019 Archibald Winner Tony Costa with wife Jeannette Siebols and Coffs Harbour's youngest Young Archie winner, Ava Birdie Gallagher and her mum Jahnavi Swift.

“We also saw some self-portraits with students reflecting inwardly on their own qualities.”

Coffs Coast Young Archie winner Arlia Portus Keen, has attended the Young Archies in Sydney four times and said it inspired her to enter.

RELATED: Bigger and better: Archibald Prize like you have never seen

Arlia has always loved art-making and shares her advice for other kids who want to try their hand at portraiture.

“Even if you don’t like it, you kind of just have to finish it because it might end up looking good and it doesn’t matter if it looks really realistic, it just has to show emotion.”

Judging the creations were local artist and educator, Tori Donnelley; art therapist, Emma Gentle; and Tiffany Townsend, from the official sponsor, ANZ Coffs Harbour.

ANZ provided a $50 cash prize to each of the award winners and Coffs Central are also sponsors of the exhibition.

All portraits entered into the Young Archies will feature on the walls of Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery and Culture Hub in Coffs Central from January 22 to March 6, right alongside the prestigious Archibald Prize 2019.

Award winners:

- Ava Gallagher, 5 to 8 years

- Gabrielle Badger, 9 to 12 years

- Arlia Portus Keen, 13 to 15 years

- Ally Cork for 16 to 18 years



‘He lost a lot of blood’: Cop reveals harrowing ordeal

Premium Content ‘He lost a lot of blood’: Cop reveals harrowing ordeal

In the race to save a life, Jarrod French says every minute counts

BARGAIN: Snap up an abandoned bomb courtesy of Council

Premium Content BARGAIN: Snap up an abandoned bomb courtesy of Council

Find the perfect present for that special someone with some of the best abandoned...

Changes spell end of dolphin ‘abuse-ment’ parks: MP

Premium Content Changes spell end of dolphin ‘abuse-ment’ parks: MP

Animal welfare activists are hoping the government will now also support moves to...