I said to my friends Chris and Terry as they dropped me home after a weekend in Sydney that at least I knew where that weekend had gone. They go fast don't they!
Richard and I caught a lift to Sydney on the weekend to see the first born, whose birthday it is next Saturday, and while we were there took the opportunity to pop into the Art Gallery of NSW...
the winner: margaret olley painted by ben quilty
The main event was the Archibald Prize for portraiture. Our tastes vary a bit...although we both loved the winner...
by andrew mezei
but I love having the eye of a trained artist to tell me more about what I'm seeing...
by deidre but-husaim
...it helps me to appreciate the artists and their work even more than I already do.
by del kathryn barton
Mind you, there are some on display that I think are appalling...and some that were very disturbing...but I'm not showing you any of those. You can look those up yourself and leave me out of it :)
by jaiwei shen
The paintings you've seen in this post so far (and a few more to go) were my favourites from the Archibald Prize (for portraiture). The one you see below was only the size of a matchbox (really!) and the fine detail was painted with a pin...I couldn't believe it.
by natasha bieniek
by sonia kretschmar
The next two are finalists in the Wynne prize (australian scenery or sculpture)...
 by neil frazer
by alexander mackenzie
And finally, a couple from the Sulman Prize (for subject, genre or mural...I'm still trying to work out what that means!)...these made me smile, especially as this next one is called 'royal mount'...I love a bit of smart-alecky whimsy :)
 by joanna braithwaite
I've saved my favourite for last...it's like something out of a wonderful children's book full of tales fantastic isn't it?
by kate bergin
So...there you go. Maybe they're not to your taste, but that's ok I'm sure. Life would be pretty dull if we all liked the same things. I'm still running around like a headless chook with lots of work on at the moment, so this is going to have to be my top ten this week. In lieu of pretty rooms. Still beautiful...just different. Hope you don't mind. If you do, there's always next week!
all images from the art gallery of nsw. Click here to find out more about the prizes and to see all the finalists