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The Patricia Farrar Award for Painting

As many will know, Patricia Farrar was a beloved and inspirational student of OCA whose work covered rich ground including identity, migration, bright colour, gardens, education, drawing in painting, Australia and sound. Patricia passed away just prior to graduating and was awarded her degree posthumously.

As Programme Leader for Painting I feel personally that Patricia would have had a continued influence on OCA as an alumna and I have tried to preserve that influence by instigating an award at OCA in her memory and as an ongoing inspiration. The award is given to a student annually who embodied something of Patricia’s spirit and creative concerns.

Throughout the year at each assessment point any tutor can nominate a student for consideration. In January of each year a panel from the staff team considers each nominated portfolio of creative work and selects a winner.

I am delighted to announce that OCA level 3 student Anna Barnard was selected as the 2022 winner of this prize. This is a book prize, and Anna has been gifted the recent book on Bonnard by Lucy Whelan.

Anna’s work has been concerned with memories of a childhood spent in another country – something that Patricia would have found fascinating, but mostly Anna and Patricia share an immense love of colour and gesture. For Anna this has developed into a forensic examination of pigments and binders and a deeply felt relationship with paint as a material. The tenderness and emotional presence of her paintings is striking and they really do feel like portals into another realm – one where paint is perhaps an embodied agent?

The work has a poetic sensibility, with Bonnard a clear influence. The way colour operates in the work invites close attention, some of the optical mixing is quite wild!

Howard Farrar (Patricia’s husband) and the rest of Patricia’s family have been informed and are very pleased with our choice.

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Posted by author: Emma Drye
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12 thoughts on “The Patricia Farrar Award for Painting

  • Amazing work, just such a shame she did not get to personally receive this award. However, I am sure she will be looking down with pride. Well deserved.

  • Well done Emma for creating this award in Patricia’s memory , it is a fitting way to honour her.

  • Hello everyone. A heartfelt Thank you to everyone who left their comment here for me. I greatly appreciate each of them. It was such a great idea Emma to organise Patricia’s award which has become a wonderful (and its very own) tradition for the OCA. I feel very honoured and thrilled to receive it. Patricia was an incredible person, a very talented artist and an intensely inquisitive mind. She still lives through her legacy (including this inspirational award) and in our memory.

  • Congratulations on this award Anna. Your use of colour is stunning, I can very much see Bonnard’s influence in your work. What a beautiful and fitting way to honour Patricia’s memory.

  • This work is lovely, evoking for me, those summer evenings of childhood, full of light and colour and which felt never-ending. Patricia’s work always stuck in my mind and I miss seeing it. I am sure that she would be pleased with this fitting award.

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