Local artist at international exhibition

A PORT Alfred artist has had one of his paintings selected for display at a major international art exhibition in London next month, where it will be one of the 163 works of art from all over the world to judged for the “David Shepherd World Wildlife Artist of the Year” award.

INTERNATIONAL EXPOSURE: Local artist Bob McKenzie and his work, ‘Giants’

Bob McKenzie, whose RD McKenzie Art Gallery is on historic Wharf Street in Port Alfred, has had his work, “Giants”, which features elephants and a Baobab tree, selected to be among the finalists for this competition. This work will be on display at The Mall Gallery in London’s up-market SW1 for a week in June, and it takes its place among 162 other international works of art selected as finalists for this competition.

Now in its 10th year, the exhibition is famous among art collectors, buyers and dealers because of the quality of work on display. All paintings are offered for sale while on the exhibition, with the profits on these sales going to support endangered wildlife.

David Shepherd, founder of the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, says: “At a time when wildlife is under such devastating pressure from expanding human populations and the illegal trade, it seems fitting that we take a step back and reflect on the sheer beauty and diversity of our natural world, which could be lost if we do not truly appreciate the value of the world around us”.

Shepherd has raised millions of rands for his foundation through the art world in this way.

McKenzie became a professional artist after a career in farming, and his country roots are reflected in many of the works he does, a lot of which are on display at his gallery on historic Wharf Street.

McKenzie said he was both flattered and honoured to have one of his works selected for the international exhibition and competition, and especially so because of the cause it supports.

The winner will be announced at the exhibition gallery on June 27.


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