The 2020 Victorian Salon des Refusés
Cat #23 Raelene Sharp
MR. MARC BESEN AC - THIS GOES WITH THAT
Oil on Linen
106 cm h x 152 cm w
On our first meeting with Mr. Besen, he told me that he had three passions and he counted them off on his fingers: 1. Australian Art, 2. Good Wine, 3. Chamber Music
In this painting, I developed an idea to incorporate these elements. We decided together that he would like the Charles Blackman painting to be the representative or symbol of his Australian Art collection. The bottle of TarraWarra Rosé and the TarraWarra Music Festival catalogue are represented on the table alongside a small piece of sculpture he treasures. The Blackman painting’s umbrella unites all these elements under the one canopy. I painted Mr Besen in a more considered way. Detailing his kind and welcoming personality and relaxed and gentlemanly manner. With his glass of Rosé, there is a feeling that he just wants to invite you to sit and have a glass of his excellent wine and a chat with him. Which is exactly how I felt every time I visited his home.
On the other hand - Mr Besen is a collector of modern art and I wanted to represent his preference for this style of art in the painting. So early on, I decided not to complete the background and just leave the sketch and ragged in initial work, but I did do a little extra work in some areas to further explain my ideas. I wanted the painting to evoke thoughts and comments and have a little bit of an interesting edge to it.
This portrait was submitted to the 2019 Archibald Prize.
click on artwork to enlarge