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Thallon artist Lucy Brosnan wins grand prize for Bank Art Museum Moree 2019 Moree Portrait Prize

A National Art School student has taken out the Grand Prize in Bank Art Museum Moree's (BAMM) 2019 Moree Portrait Prize, which opened to a full house on Friday night.

Thallon's Lucy Brosnan, who is currently studying at the National Art School in Sydney, won the $1500 Barne Family and Binneguy Station Grand Prize with her portrait titled Rodney #2.

She was unable to attend the Moree Portrait Prize opening on Friday, December 6, however this year's judge Allison Bellinger - director of A.K. Bellinger, a commercial art gallery in Inverell - said she was immediately "captivated" by Lucy's painting.

"The simple use of simple brushstrokes was impressive, nothing more than what was needed," she said in her judges' comments.

"The colour, technique and composition really works to create a moody painting. The only point was - art should not be judged on a frame, but using a quality frame will emphasise a good piece of art. Please keep painting as you have something special!"

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Interstate artist Jandamara Cadd received highly commended in the Grand Prize for his portrait of Moree identity Dick Estens.

Moree's Christine Partridge won the $500 Irritek Local Prize for her Portrait of an unknown man which Bellenger said she was "instantly drawn to".

"The sombre use of colour and tone, the stance of the character, all create an emotive piece reminiscent of another era (perhaps Dickerson)," she commented.

Josie Birchall received highly commended in the Local Prize for her painting Yesterday of her grandfather when he was 15.

Courtney Brazel won the 16-18 years section for her untitled portrait, described by Bellenger as a "vibrant painting capturing the beauty and hopefulness of a young lady - the use of newspaper as collage makes it contemporary with a lovely use of colour", while Priya Mulligan was highly commended.

In the 13-15 years category, Maija McGregor won with her self portrait, which Bellenger said "good technique through simple line use has created a believable character study. The technique used is of particular note, creating a unique texture."

Kaylah Randall was highly commended for her portrait of Bob Ross, titled Happy Trees. Kaylah is fascinated with the late Bob Ross' landscapes, which he calls happy trees, and taught herself to paint by watching his tutorials on YouTube.

Amelia Mitchell won the 8-12 years section for her drawing of her sister Shea when she was younger, titled Playtime, which Bellenger said was "technically advanced for a young artist - good composition, nice use of shading, and a lovely gentle drawing", while Croppa Creek's Oliver Bellman received highly commended.

Finally, Allira Rose won the under 8s category, which Bellenger said was "by far the most difficult category to judge", for her untitled portrait, while Eddie Ball was highly commended for his portrait, Mr Col.

While some of the winners weren't able to be present on the night, BAMM interim director Kate Tuart said it was great to see a full house on opening night.

"We are thrilled to have such a large turnout tonight and to have so many artworks by local and regional artists on our walls," she said.

"This year we have 218 individual works displayed, over 70 more works that last year's prize.

"We encouraged entries from Moree as well as further afield and asked artists to think outside the box and draw outside the lines when planning their artworks. It's always a joy to see what artists can come up with and this year didn't disappoint.

"I hope budding, amateur and professional artists continue to support the exhibition, making each year bigger and better than the last - especially with the introduction of the BAMM Art Fair in June each year."

The exhibition will run until January 17, 2020, when the winner of the final prize, the $500 Rhodes Kildea People's Choice award is announced. Voting for the People's Choice Prize will run until January 10.