We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.

🛈 We’re open again. Read about our COVID-safe plans and how you can visit.

Marc Etherington Idris Murphy and his dog Wally

acrylic on marine plywood

117 x 87 cm

Marc Etherington has loved the paintings of artist Idris Murphy since he first saw them. ‘His use of colour and form are something I am drawn to. I find myself saying “I wish I painted that!” a lot while looking at his work,’ says Etherington.

‘I have painted Idris wearing his red-framed glasses and an Akubra hat which he has worn on his many painting trips to Fowlers Gap in north-western New South Wales. His shirt depicts his lovely golden retriever Wally. I constructed my own frame for the painting, which contains 18 small wooden images of Idris wearing his trademark bib-and-brace overalls in an assortment of colours.’

Born in Sydney in 1973, Etherington is a self-taught artist from Gymea who likes nothing better than spending time with his wife and two children when he isn’t busy painting his weird ideas. This is his fifth time as an Archibald Prize finalist. He has also been in the Sulman Prize on two occasions and is a finalist in this year’s Wynne Prize.

Listen to label text

Watch Auslan video