John Moores 1st Prize winning work acquired for Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool

  • 17 September 2010

A prize-winning work by Keith Coventry has been secured for Liverpool's Walker Art Gallery with our help.

Spectrum Jesus by the Burnley born artist was singled out by the judging panel of the UK’s biggest painting prize, which this year attracted 3,000 entrants. Described by judge Sir Norman Rosenthal as "full of ambiguity and contradictions", the painting will join the Walker Art Gallery’s impressive collection of British paintings.

Depicting the face of Jesus Christ, Spectrum Jesus is based on Han van Meegeren's notorious forgeries of the 17th- century Dutch master Johannes Vermeer. The painting is a blue monochromatic image, part of a series rendered in the palette and style of the German Expressionist Emil Nolde.

Our Director, Stephen Deuchar, said: "This is a captivating work, offering a subtle contemplation on the notion of the original and the copy, and its vivid blue colour really draws the viewer’s attention. We’re really pleased to help the Walker acquire Spectrum Jesus, so that it can be shown in context of previous winners, as well as help tell the wider story of British modern and contemporary art."

Our assistance in acquiring the significant work is appreciated by Director of Art Galleries Reyahn King, who is "delighted" to add the work to the Gallery’s collection of contemporary British paintings. King said: "we are extremely grateful to the Art Fund for enabling us to keep this collection vital and relevant with the inclusion of this year's worthy winner."

Press Release