Priceless portrait up for grabs

Thomas Brown’s portrait of Shaun Wallace is being auctioned off for Cure Kids in Queenstown...
Thomas Brown’s portrait of Shaun Wallace is being auctioned off for Cure Kids in Queenstown tomorrow night. PHOTO: JAMES ALLAN PHOTOGRAPHY
A Queenstown artist has swung in behind a charity close to the resort’s heart, donating a special portrait which, by the end of tonight, will be priceless.

Thomas Brown’s portrait of The Chase’s Shaun Wallace — known as the ‘Dark Destroyer’ — will go under the hammer at the Queenstown Memorial Centre during the sold-out Novotel Cure Kids Quiz.

Wallace will be there as a special guest, and able to personalise the portrait for the winning bidder.

Cure Kids South Island philanthropic specialist Will Hall tells Mountain Scene Brown was one of the first people he met when he took over the role in 2021.

Hall knew former Cure Kids South Island fundraising coordinator Josie Spillane, who directed her to the late Wayne Cafe.

He recommended Hall have a chat with Brown to discuss potential auction items for the child research charity.

"Most artists you meet will do a style, he’s able to transcend all these styles [and] I fell in love with his stuff."

Hall offered to use his connections to get some of Brown’s portraits, hung in his gallery, personally autographed, when he could.

In return, from time-to-time Brown will create a second portrait to auction off for the charity.

While normally the portrait’s pre-signed ahead of the auction, tomorrow night will be different.

"This time, because we’ve got Shaun in the room, he can personalise it and write a note — whatever the winning bidder wants," Hall says.

"What a great thing to have next to your television when you’re watching The Chase at 5pm every night.

"I really hope Shaun appreciates it, and we can get a good price for Cure Kids."

Brown confirms there’ll be no reserve on the framed portrait.