WINNER OF THE PEOPLE'S CHOICE
for the 2003 ARCHIBALD PRIZE
DALU ZHAO for his portrait "Lao Fei" Stephen FitzGerald
(15 May 2003) It was announced at the Art Gallery of New South Wales today that Sydney-based artist DALU ZHAO is the winner of the People's Choice for the 2003 Archibald prize for his portrait "Lao Fei" Stephen FitzGerald.
Professor Stephen FitzGerald is Chairman of The Asia-Australia Institute at the University of NSW. He is also Chairman and Managing Director of FitzGerald Consulting Pty Ltd. Between 1973 and 1976 he was the first Australian Ambassador to the People's Republic of China, and from 1974 to 1976 was the Australian Ambassador to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea as well. He speaks fluent Mandarin.
Dalu Zhao was introduced to Professor FitzGerald by a mutual friend, also an artist, as someone whose portrait he might like to paint. Zhao has called the portrait Lao Fei, which is Chinese for "old FitzGerald" - "lao" or "old" being a popular term in Chinese showing friendly respect.
Born in Beijing, China in 1953, Zhao emigrated to Australia in October 2001. He was a Professor at the Capital Normal University in Beijing. His work was seen in the All-China Teachers exhibition in 1987, The Great Wall exhibition in 1988 and the National Art Exhibition in 1992. He has had four solo shows in Rome, the most recent in 2000, and won the Campidolio Oro gold award in 1993 from the International Institute of Cultural Unity of Italy. In June 2001, he was the only Asian-Pacific artist represented in the first Men for Earth exhibition for the United Nations in Rome where he was awarded a silver medal.
More than 50,000 votes were entered for the People's Choice. Dalu Zhao and one visitor who voted for this work, Nicole Bour, each receive $2,500.
The Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes and the Citigroup Private Bank Australian Photographic Portrait Prize will be on view at the Art Gallery of New South Wales until Sunday 25 May 2003.