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Jeremy Eden Firass

oil on canvas

120.2 x 180.4 cm

Jeremy Eden’s subject is actor and director Firass Dirani, who is well known for his roles in Underbelly: golden mile, House husbands and SAS Australia.

‘I was intrigued by his acting style and personal liveliness, so decided to reach out and propose a collaboration for this portrait,’ says Eden, a Sydney-based artist.

‘Getting to know Firass gave me more insight into his personality. We met at my studio and had a conversation about creating art and lifestyle changes due to COVID-19. He told me he had recently directed a short film titled Baba, a retelling of the story of his father growing up in Lebanon. We discussed the importance of diversity in the arts and he said, “Diversity is all around us and to see diverse faces exhibited in the 100th anniversary of the Archibald Prize is just a beautiful notion”. I knew I wanted to create a portrait that reflected his passion, vibrant personality, honesty and energy.

‘I painted over a period of four months, working from photos and drawings. This large close-up portrait, with its heightened sense of detail, displays every nuance of his face – showing personality as much as physical likeness.’

Eden completed a Bachelor of Fine Art at Queensland College of Art in 2015. This is his first time as an Archibald Prize finalist.

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