ART of music 2006

The inaugural Art of Music event, held on Friday 06 October 2006, was the biggest charity event of the year.  Art of Music, the brainchild of celebrated musician Jenny Morris, is an exciting new high profile event bringing together iconic singer/songwriters and prominent contemporary artists.  The guest list was the who's who of both art and music in Australia.  

The Sydney Children's Choir performed Nick Cave's The Ship Song and Iva Davies, joined by Jimmy Barnes, performed Great Southern Land.

This event set the benchmark for future Art of Music events, and it raised valuable funds for Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy who transform lives via the power of music.  

2006 artists who presented artworks to be auctioned were: Jason Benjamin, Margarita Georgiadis, Nicholas Harding, Adam Hill, Cherry Hood, Paul Jackson, Ken Johnson, Kerrie Lester, Michael Leunig, Euan MacLeod, Reg Mombassa, Paul Newton, Ben Quilty, Craig Ruddy, Wendy Sharpe, Kathleen Vifiadis, James Willebrant.

Jason Benjamin

Inspiration: Beds are Burning by Midnight Oil


Beds are Burning

Dimensions: 180cm x 120cm

Jason Benjamin was a finalist in the Archibald Prize in 2005. A graduate of the Pratt Institute in New York, he has, since 1992 had 21 solo exhibitions in Australia, London and Hong Kong and has also been represented in numerous Australian collections including Artbank, the National Gallery of Victoria and the National Portrait Gallery

Magarita Georgiadis

Inspiration: I Touch Myself by The Divinyls.


I Touch Myself

Dimensions: 152cm x 168cm

Margarita Georgiadis was a finalist in the Archibald Prize, 2001 with a portrait of a topless Libbi Gorr. Giving the finger! She has exhibited in over 15 group exhibitions, 14 solo exhibitions and is represented in private and corporate collections in Europe, Los Angeles, UK, Japan, Singapore, New Zealand and Australia. She has been a finalist in The Archibald Prize, Salon des Refuses, The Mosman Art Prize, Metro 5 Art Award, The Portia Geach Memorial Award, Redlands Westpac Art Award, The Paddington Art Prize and the Country Energy Art Award.

Nicholas Harding

Inspiration: The Ship Song by Nick Cave


The Ship Song

Dimensions: 123cm x 138cm

Nicholas Harding has been an Archibald finalist every year since 1994. He won it in 2001 with a painting of actor John Bell as King Lear . He was Commended in 1998 for his portrait of Margaret Olley and last year he won the People’s Choice Award and was Highly Commended for his portrait of Bob Dickerson, 'Bob's Daily Swim'. Since 1981 Harding has been included in numerous group shows, including the Dobell Drawing Prize (winning in 2001), the Wynne and Sulman Prizes, the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize and the Kedumba Drawing Award (joint winner in 1994). He has exhibited in London and has had regular solo exhibitions in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. He received a Centenary Medal in 2003 for services to Australian Art.

Adam Hill

Inspiration: Black Fella White Fella by Warumpi Band


Black Fella White Fella

dimensions: 200 x 55cms

Adam Hill is a Dhungatti Aboriginal whose art work spans graphic design, photography, and cartooning and he is a celebrated didgeridoo performer and MC. A member of Boomalli Aboriginal Artists, Hill is a multi award winner in the medium of acrylic on canvas including the 'Mil-Pra' art prize, thrice finalist in the 'Telstra National Indigenous Art Prize', and the 'NSW Parliament Art Prize'. He has, over the past 6 years, staged 10 solo exhibitions and an equal number of group and invitational showings. Recent gallery successes were celebrated at MORI gallery Sydney and BIRRUNG gallery Leichhardt and the Fringe Festival Adelaide.

Cherry Hood

Inspiration: Am I Not Pretty Enough by Kasey Chambers


Am I Not Pretty Enough

Dimensions: 120cm x 120cm

Cherry Hood won the Archibald Prize in 2002 with her portrait of pianist Simon Tedeschi. She has since had two solo exhibitions at the Mori Gallery. Prior to this, she had countless solo and group shows at university and artist-run spaces and her works are in many collections in Australia and overseas. She was a finalist in the 2001 Archibald Prize with her water colour of art lecturer Matthÿs Gerber.

Paul Jackson

Inspiration: Into Temptation by Crowded House


Into Temptation

Dimensions: 198cm x 153cm

Paul Jackson is a five time Archibald finalist, this year taking out the People’s Choice Award for his portrait of actor Gary McDonald. In 1985 he won the Australian Maritime Art Award, and has exhibited regularly since 1969 in New Zealand and Australia in both solo and group exhibitions. His work is represented in public gallery exhibitions in New Zealand and in private collections in Australia, New Zealand, the USA and the UK.

Ken Johnson

Inspiration: Great Southern Land by Icehouse


Great Southern Land

Dimensions: 80cm x 90cm

Ken Johnson is an established mid career artist. He has been a finalist two times in the Archibald prize and two times in the Wynne Prize. He has had solo and group exhibitions in New York, Switzerland, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Chicago and has exhibited in Shanghai Art Museum, China. His paintings adorn palaces, universities, foyers, regional galleries and has had a sell-out book publication in 2000 titled "Life and Landscape".

Kerrie Lester

Inspiration: Break In The Weather by Jenny Morris


Break In The Weather

Dimensions: 210cm x 150cm

Kerrie Lester has been working as a professional artist for 33 years. She has been an Archibald finalist 16 times and has won the Packers Prize. Lester has 4 portraits in the National Portrait Gallery and is represented in all major collections in Australia, in private collections overseas and has exhibited in a biennale and pespecta..... She has had biannual solo exhibitions since 1976 and has recently had a 30-year survey show.

Michael Leunig

Inspiration: Don't Dream It's Over by Crowded House


Don't Dream It's Over

Dimensions: 116cm x 91cm x 12cm

Michael Leunig could be labeled an outspoken cartoonist, political-humorist, social-observer, modern day philosopher or catalyst for free thought. He has received two honorary doctorates and been declared a national living treasure by the National Trust of Australia. Twenty-one books of Leunig's drawings, poems and prayers have been published and his original works are held in various public collections.

Euan Macleod

Inspiration: Because I Love You (Do What You Wanna Do) by Masters' Apprentices


Because I Love You

Dimensions: 80cm x 60cm

Euan McLeod won the Archibald Prize in 1999. He was born in Christchurch, New Zealand and moved to Sydney in 1981. He has a Diploma of Fine Arts from Canterbury University in Christchurch and has been in many group and solo exhibitions in Australia. He was a finalist in the Sulman Prize in 1996, 1998, 1999 and 2000 before he won the Sulman prize in 2001, with the painting titled Exquisite Corpse with Fire. He was a finalist in the Wynne Prize in 1998, 1999 and 2003.His Archibald winning painting in 1999 was called Self portrait/head like a hole.

Reg Mombassa

Inspiration: To Her Door by Paul Kelly


To Her Door

Dimensions: 90cm x 60cm

Reg Mombassa – Chris O’Doherty a.k.a. Reg Mombassa has a diploma of painting from the National Art School. He has exhibited at Watters Gallery since 1975, and has designed t-shirts and posters for Mambo Graphics since 1986. He was a member of Mental as Anything from 1976 to 2000 and has been a member of Dog Trumpet since 1990. He has exhibited his work in group and solo shows in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Italy and England.

Paul Newton

Inspiration: Scar by Missy Higgins



Dimensions: 66cm x 84cm

Paul Newton has been selected 7 times as an Archibald finalist, this year for his portrait of Pat Corrigan. His portrait of Roy and HG won the 2001 Sydney and Melbourne People’s Choice awards and Packer’s Prize. His portrait of Australian rugby legend David Campese, a finalist in the 2000 Sporting Portrait Prize, won first place in The Portrait Society of America’s 2002 International Portrait Competition. Newton won the same competition in 2003. He has works in the National Portrait Gallery, Parliament House, Columbia and Princeton Universities, and numerous other collections.

Ben QUilty

Inspiration: Khe Sanh by Cold Chisel


Khe Sanh

Dimensions: 160cm x 150cm

Ben Quilty was a finalist in this year’s Archibald Prize for his portrait of artist Adam Cullen. He was a finalist in the 2004 Archibald and Wynne Prizes and in 2005 was an Archibald finalist with his portrait of Beryl Whitely, mother of the late Brett Whitely and founder and patron of the Brett Whitely Travelling Art Scholarship, which Quilty won in 2002. He has worked full-time as an artist ever since and has shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions.

Craig Ruddy

Inspiration: Original Sin by INXS


Original Sin

Dimensions: 198cm x 101cm

Craig Ruddy was a finalist in this year’s Archibald prize with his self-portrait entitled, Into The Box. He won the Archibald Prize in 2004 with his portrait of David Gulpilil, sparking a controversy that saw another artist contend the portrait’s eligibility in court. A self taught artist, Ruddy had his first solo exhibition in 2002, and has participated in several group shows including the 2003 Salon de Refuses at the S H Ervin Gallery, Sydney.

Wendy Sharpe

Inspiration: Throw Your Arms Around Me by Hunters & Collectors


Throw Your Arms Around Me

Dimensions: 85 cms x 100 cms (framed)

Wendy Sharpe won the Sulman Prize in 1986 with Black Sun – Morning and Night and the Archibald Prize in 1996 with Self Portrait – as Diana of Erskineville. She has entered the Archibald Prize at least 6 times and been hung at least 3 times. She was interviewed in the 2005 Peter Berner documentary about the Archibald Prize called Loaded Brush. She was one of Australia's official war artists sent to East Timor in 1999.

Kathleen Vifiadis

Inspiration: Friday On My Mind by The Easybeats


Friday On My Mind

Dimensions: 167 cms x 137 cms

Kathleen Vafiadis was an Archibald finalist this year with her portrait of Labour Party MP Julia Gillard. Exhibiting since 1971, Vafiadis’ solo shows include Rigoletto at Fitzroy Gallery, Melbourne in 2005 and Mary Chimside at Wyndham Cultural Centre in 2004. She won the Wyndham Now Acquisitive Art Prize in 2000 and her work is held in several state and local council collections.

James Willebrant

Inspiration: Across The Night by Silverchair


Across The Night

Dimensions: 120 cms x 94 cms

James Willebrant studied at the National Art School in Sydney and has in the past 30 years, had numerous solo exhibitions both in Australia and overseas. He has been twice a finalist in the Wynne Prize, a finalist 4 times in the Sulman Prize and was a finalist in the 1975 controversial Bloomfield/Burstall Archibald Prize. His work is held in most major Australian galleries and in many private collections.


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Corporate Sponsors

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Major Supports

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  • Allen & Unwin
  • Allens, Arthur, Robinson
  • APRA
  • Cape Lodge
  • EMI
  • Essential Art Services
  • Falls Gallery
  • FDC Building Services
  • Grand Banks
  • Grandiflora
  • Hertz Car Rental
  • ICAP
  • J Albert & Son
  • QBE
  • Quadplex
  • Simply Beautiful
  • Showgroup
  • The Think Ahead Group
  • Trippas White
  • Voyager Estate

Special thanks


  • Edmund Capon, Leith Douglas and the staff of the Art Gallery of New South Wales for making this event possible
  • Reg Mombassa for the wonderful Art of Music logo
  • Glenn A. Baker for the songwriter biographies and for putting the songs in their historical perspective
  • Mike Ripoll and Firoz of Tandem Group for their patience and design expertise
  • the indefatigable Peter McLaughlin for laying the foundations for this event
  • the remarkable Jenny Morris, whose imagination, passion and hard-work has brought this event into being