Former Canberran shortlisted for Archibald Prize

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“Cato, Callie and Comet” by Luke Cornish.

CANBERRA-born artist Luke Cornish has been shortlisted for the 2019 Archibald Prize. It was announced yesterday (May 2) by the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

The announcement, which also included shortlistees for the Wynne and Sulman prizes and the Young Archie competition, followed the naming of West Australian artist Tessa MacKay as winner of the Archibald packing room prize for “Through the looking glass”, her hyperreal portrait of actor David Wenham.

Cornish, better known here as street artist ELK, now lives in Sydney. He was an Archibald Prize finalist in 2012, was a finalist in the 2013 Sulman Prize and won the people’s choice award at the 2017 Salon des Refusés.

“Through the looking glass” by Tessa Mackay, oil on linen. Photo: AGNSW, Mim Stirling.

His Archibald subject is businesswoman and media commentator Sue Cato, also a board member of Carriageworks in Sydney and a member of Sydney Contemporary’s advisory council.

“To be honest, I really just wanted to paint her dogs, Callie and Comet but… to align with the terms and conditions of the Archibald Prize I needed to add someone distinguished in the arts,” he says.

This year a record 919 number of entries for the Archibald Prize were received by the gallery.

Finalists in all prizes will be exhibited at the Art Gallery of NSW from May 11 to September 8. Bookings to





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Helen Musa
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