Archibald Prize 2016. Finalists. McLean Edwards by Dean Brown
Artist: Dean Brown
Title: McLean Edwards
Medium: oil on board
Dimensions: 93 x 73 cm
McLean Edwards is an artist known for his bold use of colour in theatrical, darkly humorous figurative paintings. He is a five-time Archibald finalist.
‘I’ve been a great admirer of McLean Edwards’ work from the first moment I saw it. I was instantly captivated by the themes and narratives that seemed to exist in his visual world. I feel his work is truly individual,’ says Dean Brown.
‘McLean has been a friend and mentor to me for a number of years and I have wanted to paint his portrait for some time. He can be incredibly animated and theatrical, with an intense gaze, and I felt that would make for a dramatically expressive portrait if I could capture it.
‘I painted the portrait from the vantage point of his studio mezzanine. I turned all the lights off and spot lit him as if he were an actor on stage. The number 44 in the bottom right-hand corner is a tongue-in-cheek homage to the way he signs his work, not with his signature but his age when he painted it. I have appropriated his concept as a sign of respect.’
Born in Sydney in 1981, Brown completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honours at the National Art School. His work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions in Australia and internationally. He was awarded the Storrier Onslow National Art School Paris Studio Residency in 2011 and was highly commended in the Lloyd Rees Memorial Youth Art Award.