‘Nancy Borlase‘ 2007
oil on linen
121cm x 152cm
  • People’s Choice Award | Portia Geach Memorial Prize 2007

Drawn to many older people for their stories, I feel humbled by their talent, their wealth of knowledge and experience and of what they have contributed during their full lives…Nancy Borlase was one of these people.

Devoting and dedicating her life to the arts as both critic and painter, she received a medal of the order of Australia in 1987 for her contribution to Australian Art, and in 20004 – Honory Doctorate from the University of Newcastle. Also has won the Portia Geach Memorial Award in 2002.

I met with Nancy and her husband Laurie Short in their home of 45 years and then in a Mosman nursing home where Nancy spent her last days. She spoke openly of her past and their travels, art works, artists and her own painting. Although during our conversations what Nancy didn’t say gave further insight to this remarkable woman.

Nancy never enquired how I might portray her or the scale of the canvases or indeed how long the process might take. I was endeared by her understanding, strength of character, generosity and warmth she expressed.

I will always remember Nancy Borlase and be grateful for the time we spent together and for the opportunity to paint her portrait.