A charcoal drawing and an artwork from a series based on memorial statues of soldiers have won the top awards in the Anderson Park art awards.
John Wishart received the Macalisters Southland Artist of the Year Award for his charcoal drawing entitled From Lake Hawea.
Wanaka-based artist Paul McLachlan won the E Hayes & Sons Art Award with his work Soldier Five.
Anderson Park Art Gallery manager Stephen Davies said the competition was tough this year as the six finalists had entered strong works.
"There was a bit of a debate going around and a few people had problems making up their minds."
A team of judges from Anderson Park Art Gallery and Eastern Southland Gallery worked through the submissions to find the best works.
McLachlan's winning work was from a series based on memorial statues of soldiers throughout Otago and Southland. He is in Venice on an artist's residency and will return home in January.
The gallery had been talking to him about having a solo show in April or May next year, Mr Davies said.
Wishart, who has won the award three times, said he was relieved to win with a drawing this year as he had been worried that the gallery would prefer a painting. "I wasn't sure whether putting a drawing in would be the way to go."
He usually sculpts but had been doing a series of charcoal drawings and liked the immediacy that came with drawing, he said.
"Charcoal is a great medium, you can get really messy with it but it can still look really good."
The E Hayes & Sons Art Award is in its second year and a prize of $5000 goes to the winning artist.
Macalisters has been a major sponsor for the gallery and the Macalisters Southland Artist of the Year Award's prize is $1000.
The awards were announced at the gallery's annual Spring Exhibition, which opened on Saturday night.
The exhibition is on until October 28.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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