Art lovers poised for Archibald winner

Indigenous work among 2020 Archibald finalists includes a Blak Douglas portrait of Dujuan Hoosan.
Indigenous work among 2020 Archibald finalists includes a Blak Douglas portrait of Dujuan Hoosan.

This year's Archibald Prize winner will be revealed on Friday with portraits of refugee Behrouz Boochani, Indigenous author Bruce Pascoe and popular actor Magda Szubanski among the contenders.

The 55 Archibald finalists announced last week include Angus McDonald's portrait of Boochani, the Kurdish-Iranian granted refugee status by New Zealand, and Wendy Sharpe's portrait of Szubanski.

Sharpe won the Archibald in 1996 while McDonald has been a finalist six times, with this year's winner to be awarded $100,000.

Among the contenders is Craig Ruddy's painting of Indigenous writer and farmer Bruce Pascoe. This is Ruddy's fifth time as an Archibald finalist with the NSW artist saying the portrait is his pledge to be an ally for Indigenous Australians and the natural world.

"For someone who had suffered such loss, Bruce's openness and vulnerability were humbling, but it was his gentility and resilience in seeking truth and reconciliation that I wanted to represent," he said in a statement.

Indigenous representation among this year's finalists includes feature portraits by Blak Douglas, Vincent Namatjira and Tiger Yaltangki.

Also among them is first-time Archibald prize entrant Meyne Wyatt who last week became the first Indigenous artist to win any of the prizes on offer in the Archibald's 99-year history.

The actor and Wongutha-Yamatji man won the Packing Room Prize for his self-portrait.

The Wynne and Sulman Prizes, for landscape or sculpture and painting or mural respectively, will also be announced on Friday.

Australian Associated Press