The ``compelling magic'' of Tasmania's Tarkine reflected in mirror and paint caught the unanimous eye of judges yesterday, giving the prestigious $40,000 Glover Prize for landscape its first female winner.
Sydney artist Janet Laurence's luminescent work offers almost X-ray vision into a tiny part of one of the world's most pristine temperate forests that it feels as if it ``utterly immerses the viewer''.
The win bittersweet for Laurence who could not attend last night's prize announcement due to a family funeral. Her gallery representative Fran Clark, of Melbourne's Arc one accepted the prize on Laurence's behalf, saying the win was ``comforting, exciting news''.
``Laurence hasn't entered a prize for 20 years, but since judging the Glover in 2005, she has followed this prize, believing it to be a very important celebration of our landscape.
``As a bushwalker she has also discovered the unbelievable beauty within the Tarkine,'' said Clark.
``This is such a tiny vision of the forest, Laurence takes you so close to the ground, but mirrors reflect perspectives that make it seem dense.
``This is quintessential Laurence, she's consistent in her passion for nature.''