Congratulations Christine Wrest-Smith who has been announced a Finalist for The Lester Prize 2021 with her beautiful portrait of Uncle Herb Patten.
‘This painting is of Aboriginal Elder Uncle Herb Patten whose ancestry is Ganai-Kurnai (maternal) and Dhudhuroa (paternal).
Uncle Herb stands proudly in front of a mural on the wall at the Aboriginal Advancement League in Melbourne, holding a branch of gum leaves.
Uncle Herb is best known as a musician and has spent his lifetime playing music on a gumleaf and has been honoured with a Master’s degree through doing so. In 2007 he was runner up in the Grand Final of Australia’s Got Talent and is currently employed as a full-time Busker for the Melbourne City Council, a job which he thoroughly enjoys.
Uncle Herb is a highly respected Elder within his community, who is deeply committed to the Christian faith and his family.’ – Christine Wrest-Smith, 2021