A van Gogh-inspired Postman Pat painting bagged the winning prize at the IHC art awards in Wellington.
Phillip Sisam, of Clive in Hawke’s Bay, painted Postman Pat after Van Gogh in just a couple of days at an art class he attends almost daily.
His watercolour pastel work was chosen from more than 600 entries by New Zealand artists aged 13 years and over with an intellectual disability.
Sisam, 34, said he was an avid fan of Postman Pat growing up and religiously watched it with his brother Michael.
His repertoire also involved flowers, snow on mountains and animals but he had chosen Pat after studying Van Gogh in class, and coming across the post-Impressionist painter’s portraits of his close friend, French postman Joseph Roulin.
Sisam put his own spin on the series of paintings and was presented with a prize of $5000 at a ceremony at the Michael Fowler Centre on Thursday night.
Art has been a big part of Sisam’s life since he moved to Hohepa School when he was eight.
He has subsequently moved into the residential community where he works and spends his spare time painting.
His mother, Carol Carr, who lives in Wellington and was at the awards with her son, said she was incredibly proud of his efforts.
Judge Denise L’Estrange-Corbet, co-head of WORLD fashion, said: “This art piece is sheer genius in having the children’s character Postman Pat sitting in a pose reminiscent of Van Gogh.
“The humour and intelligence of the whole idea shows us just how talented these artists are – standout, completely standout.”
Second place and $2000 went to Andrew Martin, of Rangiora, for his pastel drawing of Sasha, a dog swimming at Sumner Beach, Christchurch.
In third place and picking up $1000 for her efforts was Amanda Brennan, of Auckland, for her Hospital Ship entry, which was a mixture of watercolours and cotton thread depicting a hospital ship from World War I.
– The Dominion Post