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James Powditch Once upon a time in Marrickville – Anthony Albanese

acrylic on paper and board

190 x 190 cm

Anthony Albanese is the leader of the Australian Labor Party and leader of the Opposition. Says James Powditch: ‘Anthony is my federal member in Sydney’s inner-west where he has lived all his life and I most of mine. I love his politics, but I may love his taste in music even more. The set he chose when co-hosting the Rage 2013 election special could almost have been mine!

‘In the news every day during and post the bushfires I thought he must be exhausted and need some downtime. I pictured him late at night, home after a long day, music playing, just processing and lost in thought.

‘We talked about growing up in Marrickville and seeing bands – The Sunnyboys and New Order. The portrait evolved as an album cover with elements of Neil Young’s Harvest and New Order’s Power, corruption and lies.

‘Painted during lockdown, the tone shifted, the title became less homage and more lament, and the image darker as Anthony listens to the past whilst dealing with the present and a now very uncertain future.’

Powditch was born in 1966 in Sydney. He’s won the Mosman Art Prize and the Blake Prize for religious art. This is his sixth time as an Archibald Prize finalist.

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