Limerick based artist wins portrait prize

Gerry Davis winner of the Hennessy Portrait Prize 2016

Limerick based artist wins portrait prize

Gerry Davis with his portrait - Sean - in the background, after winning the Hennessy Prize

LIMERICK based artist Gerry Davis has won the Hennessy Portrait Prize 2016.

Gerry, who is from Cahir originally but graduated from Limerick School of Art and Design in 2009 and works out of Wickham Street Studios in the city, was awarded the prize of €15,000 for his work entitled ‘Seán’ at the National Gallery of Ireland on Tuesday night.

As well as the main award, Gerry will also receive a commission worth €5,000 to produce a portrait for inclusion in the National Portrait Collection.

Davis, who has a degree in Fine Art (painting) from LSAD, has been exhibiting regularly showing What Has Been Shall Always Never Be Again at the Ormston House, and staging a solo show Burrow at TACTIC. 

In 2016, in addition to being awarded a merit prize at the Golden Fleece Award, Davis exhibited at the 186th RHA Annual Exhibition, and at a three-man show The Forest that Hears and the Field that Sees in Damer House, Roscrea. His solo show Studio was held at Pallas Projects, Dublin in October.

Speaking on behalf of the judging panel, Gemma Tipton said: “Our congratulations to Gerry Davis for his winning portrait of ‘Seán’. And to the highly commended artists, Gavan McCullough and Leanne Mullen for their portraits of ‘Imran’ and ‘Someone’s Mother’ respectively.

"Their work, and that of all the finalists, reflects the extraordinary diversity of humanity and the talent of these brilliant artists in capturing that, and reflecting it back to us. These art works are all also people, people that I almost feel I have now met. I would like to thank my fellow judges on the panel and all the artists who entered the competition.”

Now in its third year, the Hennessy Portrait Price received over 400 entries, encompassing a wide range of media and materials, by artists living in Ireland and Irish artists abroad. 14 artists were shortlisted.

For more, see www.nationalgallery.ie.