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Salon des Refusés 2021

  • This event finished on 26 September 2021

The alternative Archibald and Wynne Prize selection

5th June – 26 September 2021

The Salon des Refusés was initiated by the S.H. Ervin Gallery in 1992 in response to the large number of works entered into the Archibald Prize which were not selected for display in the official exhibition. The Archibald Prize is one of Australia’s most high profile and respected awards which attracts hundreds of entries each year and the S.H. Ervin Gallery’s ‘alternative’ selection has become a much anticipated feature of the Sydney scene.

Each year our panel is invited to go behind the scenes of the judging process for the annual Archibald Prize for portraiture and Wynne Prize for landscape painting and figure sculpture at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, to select an exhibition from the many hundreds of works entered in both prizes but not chosen for the official award exhibition.

The Salon des Refusés exhibition at the S.H. Ervin Gallery has established an excellent reputation that rivals the selections in the ‘official’ exhibition, with works selected for quality, diversity, humour and experimentation, and which examine contemporary art practices, different approaches to portraiture and responses to the landscape.

Principal Sponsor



Tania Wursig has won this year’s Holding Redlich People’s Choice Award with her painting titled, Chakita, a double portrait of couple Nikita Majajas and Charlie Villas from works selected for the 2021 Salon des Refusés: The alternative Archibald & Wynne Prize selection exhibition. The announcement by Holding Redlich’s Sydney Managing Partner Stephen Trew is available for viewing.

Tania Wursig, Chakita

The artist statement reads, “Being a female artist practicing on the ‘fringe’ of the establishment, I am interested in celebrating other female creatives in this sector of society. My painting ‘Chakita’ is of lesbian power couple, Nikita Majajas and Charlie Villas, internationally recognised Pop artist/designer and DJ, and leaders within the LGBTQI + community. Passionate fashionistas, Nikita is the founder of cult Pop accessories brand Doodad + Fandango, and Charlie has made her mark in the queer party scene playing gigs such as Sydney Mardi Gras. What I most admire about this couple is their ardent support of each other’s creative endeavors. This portrait is a celebration of love, creativity and the duality of femininity.”

Tania Wursig has enjoyed a dynamic career that spans more than three decades. As a professional painter, Wursig has travelled and worked internationally, including residencies in Paris and Barcelona, an invitation to the International Artists’ Symposium in Budapest, commissioned work in Hawaii, and an annual painting residency in Tahiti for the past decade.

“Wow, what a surprise and honour. This is a very proud moment for me and humbling. To have my painting selected from the hundreds of Archibald Prize entries and what a privilege to hang in this wonderful space alongside so many celebrated artists.

The award has given me a much-needed beacon of light in these unprecedented times. It’s been almost two years since my life and career were put on hold, so this acknowledgement means a lot to me.”

National law firm Holding Redlich has been a long-time supporter of the Salon des Refusés exhibition and People’s Choice Award at the National Trust’s S.H. Ervin Gallery. The Holding Redlich People’s Choice Award celebrates its 23rd year in 2021.

Holding Redlich’s Sydney Managing Partner, Stephen Trew, made the announcement at the Gallery, congratulating Tania on her winning artwork and wishing her the best for her future creative projects.

Stephen said he is delighted that the firm’s support for the exhibition is now in its 23rd year: “Holding Redlich prides itself on its long-standing support for the arts, a tradition that stems from the firm’s founder Peter Redlich, well-known for his love of the arts. Supporting the Salon des Refuses exhibition is our longest-standing arts partnership, of which we are very proud.”

The National Trust S.H. Ervin Gallery initiated the Salon des Refusés in 1992, in response to the overwhelming number of entries submitted to the Archibald & Wynne prizes (AGNSW), yet never seen by the public.



Read Helen Pitt’s story in the Sydney Morning Herald about the winning work



ELIZABETH BARDEN          On My Mind- Portrait of Ian Haug, founder of Powderfinger (musician)

MICHAEL BELL                    Church Street studio (self portrait)

DEAN BROWN                      Otis (Otis Carey, artist/athlete)

LUKE CORNISH                   Claudia and Tumble in the Garden (Claudia Karvan, actor)

EMILY CROCKFORD          Trent Zimmerman watching the sun with all the clouds and the lorikeets are singing (Federal Member for North Sydney)

MARK DOBER                      Liz painting (in the bush at Chewton) (Elizabeth Nelson, artist)

CHRIS DOLMAN                  Self Portrait with eggs (after Bacon)

KATHERINE EDNEY           Self Portrait contemplating solitude

DAVID FAIRBAIRN             Double Lives D.F & S.A No.1 (Self Portrait with the artist Suzanne Archer)

JANE GUTHLEBEN             Greetings from Bibbenluke (Lucy Culliton, artist)

CRAIG HANDLEY                 The Performer 2021 (self portrait)

NICHOLAS HARDING         Heather Mitchell AM (actor)

ROB HOWE                           India (India Mark, artist)

LAURA JONES                     Jennifer Robinson (human rights lawyer and barrister, Acacia Scholarships founder)

JASPER KNIGHT                  Patrick Corrigan AM (businessman, philanthropist)

ROBERT MALHERBE          “I” is another. (self portrait)

HARLEY MANIFOLD            Gareth (Gareth Colliton, artist)

NIC MASON                           The firsts (self portrait with daughter)

KERRY MCINNIS                  Jude Rae (artist)

CHRISTOPHER MCVINISH  Nugget and Geoff-portrait of the Gallery owner Geoff White and his dog Nugget

LEWIS MILLER                     Self portrait in blue shirt

LIAM NUNAN                        Girl with a broken finger (Antoinette Barbouttis, artist and theatre practitioner)

CHRIS O’DOHERTY (AKA REG MOMBASSA)      Self portrait with trunks and twigs

DANIEL PATA                       Guy Warren (artist)

RODNEY POPLE                  Monkey Man (Euan Macleod, artist)

VAUGHAN PRAIN                Ron S. Peno (musician)

SALLY ROBINSON               Veena Sahajwalla (professor, scientist, engineer and inventor)

CRAIG RUDDY                      I’m Gulpilil – Portrait of David Gulpilil (actor, dancer, artist and storyteller)

EVAN SALMON                    Self portrait (in the studio)

WENDY SHARPE                  Taylor Fontaine & The Magda Szubanskis (Drag Queen / performer)

JACQUI STOCKDALE          Chappo (Mark Chapman, collector and advocate of the arts)

LIZ STUTE                             The Long Soiree, 1924, at Miss Collins’ Place (Self Portrait)

TANIA WURSIG                    CHAKITA (Nikita Majajas and Charlie Villas, pop artist/designer & DJ)

CAROLINE ZILINSKY           The Wedgwood Heart (Jonathan Dalton, artist)

TIANLI ZU                              Mr Yiribana at home with big bad Banksia and Gymea Lily (Brett Cuthbertson, head packer AGNSW)oil on linen 198.5 x 152.5cm



MICHAYE BOULTER            A quiet uncertainty

WARREN CROSSETT          The environmental polarity of a local creek

SINEAD DAVIES                   Urban Landscape

PETER GARDINER               Monaro nocturne (standard stoppages)

CRAIG HANDLEY                 Make Believe 4, 2020

PETER JONES                      Carcoar


JASPER KNIGHT                  The Departed

STEVE LOPES                      South Grafton

HARLEY MANIFOLD            Buy some, let’s ride the train together

NIC MASON                           Questioning landscape with a pouffe

MANTUA NANGALA            Untitled           

KATHRYN RYAN                  End of the Road

EVAN SALMON                    Yallah Landscape

NICK SANTORO                   The Flying Saucer

PETER SHARP                     New Horizons

PETER STEVENS                 Mount Zero- Falling Water

ROBYN SWEANEY               All our histories

ANN THOMSON                    Minnie Water 2021

RHODA TJITAYI                   Piltati Tjukurpa

JOHN R WALKER                 Memorial

JOSHUA YELDHAM             Yeoman’s Bay – Bird Rock


Featured Image: LUKE CORNISH Claudia and Tumble in the Garden, aerosol on aluminium 50 x 40cm