Foxtel Arts commissions The Archibald documentary

Foxtel has  announced the commissioning of a new local production, The Archibald, a four-part documentary series with a distinct visual style that showcases the largest and most popular portraiture competition in the country.

To be screened on Foxtel Arts channel in 2017, The Archibald will take viewers behind the scenes and away from the media front-line, as the series follows the artists and their sitters on their journey as they strive to win this iconic annual prize.

Foxtel Arts & Music Group Channel Manager, Fraser Stark said: “What better commission could there be to report than this four-part ‘blue ribbon’ documentary series. Already Foxtel Arts’ audience enjoys watching portraiture competitions in the very popular series, ‘Portrait Artist of the Year’ and this local commission will further satisfy that curiosity and taste. It’s a privilege to see inside the workings of one of the world’s most competitive art prizes and this landmark series offers to extend the channel’s commitment to deep engagement with Australian arts communities and organisations. Naturally we are thrilled to be working with Mint Pictures and the Art Gallery of New South Wales.”

 Jacquie Riddell, director of public engagement at the Art Gallery of New South Wales said: “The high profile, eagerly anticipated and often controversial Archibald Prize has captured the imagination of Australians for 96 years, and shows no signs of abating. The Archibald Prize enjoys enduring relevance because it chronicles the changing face of Australia and every year the Archibald Prize tells us new stories that resonate right across the country.

 “We’re very pleased to be inviting the cameras behind the scenes at the Art Gallery of New South Wales so we continue to share the captivating stories of the Archibald Prize.”

Adam Kay, Managing Director of Mint Pictures, said: “Hundreds of thousands of Australians view the Archibald every year, but they only see the end result. We are thrilled to be able to take viewers on the journey to witness the transition from blank canvas to final portraits.”

 Produced by Mint Pictures exclusively for Foxtel with major investment from Screen Australia, The Archibald will air on Foxtel Arts in 2017.