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Drawing Rupert Murdoch

The guest speaker at the Lowy Institute Lecture and Dinner in October 2013 was Rupert Murdoch AC. The dinner was very well subscribed, the tables filling the Sydney Town Hall. When I arrived at the lobby I was guided to my table which I was pleased to see was situated adjacent to the stage and provided a close and unobstructed view of the lectern in front of the Grand Organ.  This was the very place where, no doubt, Mr Murdoch would be speaking. Happily positioned I was soon engaged in interesting conversation with the diners at my table.

There were a number of short speeches and then Mr Murdoch navigated his way among the distinguished company, from his table which was located in the centre of the hall, to the lectern and without ado commenced his lecture.

This was my opportunity to draw and I busied myself with brush pen and paper.  There is a concentrated energy in the face of this notable media baron and in the mobility of his expression.

It attracted my notice, as I drew, to hear a characteristic Australian timbre in the voice of a man who has spent so much of his life in the wider English speaking world. It was an interesting speech, forward looking, which one might expect from a man who has never stood still in an ever changing media world. He showed us an example of state of the art technology, a wrist device that links the wearer with the planet.

A fellow diner at the table took the liberty of passing my sketchbook around the table.  Several said they thought I had caught a good likeness and there was general agreement that I should show the drawings to Mr Murdoch.

So encouraged, I wended my way between the tables greeting friends and acquaintances along the way.

 I arrived at the top table and leaning over Mr Murdoch’s shoulder I introduced myself and reminded him that he had given me an art award many years ago when he had just bought the Mirror Newspaper in Sydney. He remembered that time. Then, somewhat apprehensively, I showed him the drawings. He registered approval and smiled. “Good”.  There were many who wanted his attention, so I retraced my steps to an excellent dessert that was waiting for me at my table.

Photographs do not tell even part of the story of the energy and subtlety in a face.

In my experience it is necessary to observe from life and, using the alchemy of art, put down the image, in this case of one of one of the most significant public figures of our time.

Paul Delprat

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Whale visits Wy

Whale and Calf at Balmoral 2012

On Wednesday 18th July a mother Right Whale and her newborn calf visited the sheltered waters off the Principality of Wy

The prince’s first knowledge of it was a noisy helicopter hovering over the Principality.  One of the artists in residence informed him that the helicopter was circling whales, which were swimming, just offshore.  Surfboarders, kayakers, snorkelers,  yachters and put boaters were in close attendance together with several helicopters seen to have photographers hanging out to get the best image of this unusual occurrence. It is not known if the mother whale was pleased by all of the attention.

The symbol of our larger neighbour, Mosman, is a whale. To the prince the scene was symbolic of the geographical relationship that exists between the Principality of Wy and Mosman Council. Here was a large whale and a tiny one swimming together calmly in Balmoral bay.

A princess has just reminded him that the symbol of Wy is a dolphin, not a whale. We thank her.


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London Polination conference

London Micronation Conference

On Saturday 14th July 2012 a micro national conference was held in London at the Chelsea Town Hall. Dr Judy Lattas of Macquarie University created the name Polination to describe her valuable ongoing and extensive study of secessionist movements. She was in London, and together with The Emperor George and other dignitaries, mustered in the elegant interior of the Old Chelsea Town Hall, to share in contributing to an historic conference. Attendees reported back to The Principality of Wy that it was a great success. Prince Paul of Wy was, regrettably, unable to be there due to unavoidable duties in The Principality, and was extremely chagrined to have missed it.  Our Plenipotentiary Ambassador is hoping to make contact with dignitaries during his current tour of duty in London.

To compensate for his absence Prince Paul has created this respectful imaginary drawing in honour of the occasion, based on forwarded visual descriptions of the event. He is to be seen there “in spirit” on the balcony.


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Paul Delprat is mighty proud of Ralph Heimans

Ralph Heimans by Paul Delprat

When Ralph Heimans was a student at The Julian Ashton Art School he expressed an interest to Paul Delprat that he would like to be a portrait painter.

Recently on a return visit to his old school he spoke to the students fondly of his student days and how he approached the stunning portrait he created of Princess Mary of Denmark. He reminded the students of the importance of drawing and especially composition, areas of the art of portrait painting in which he excels. A portrait is not just a head and hands, it is a picture. 

Paul remembers a masterly perspective painting of a reclining figure on the floor in a room. All painted with the greatest of care. The painting was entered by a very youthful Ralph in The Mosman Art prize many years ago. His single minded natural talent was evident then.   

This week he has let us all know that he is to paint Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and has had a sitting in Buckingham Palace. The Queen graciously wore specific robes and Queen Victoria’s diamonds. As with his other portraits the composition will be planned and be of the utmost importance as the setting creates the atmosphere in which the subject may be fully understood.

The gentle, searching young Mosman artist Paul met all those years ago is now truly fulfilling that early promise.


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Sir Robert Menzies on the Canberra

During 1971 Paul travelled overseas on the liner Canberra, having been invited by P and O Line to conduct art classes on the ship. Sir Robert Menzies, Australia’s longest serving Prime Minister, who was en route to the UK, attended one of Paul’s classes, curious to know if Paul was related to his old friend Lady Paquita Mawson (nee Delprat). 

During a lengthy conversation about art, families, politics and cricket he kindly consented to sit and Paul created this painting.


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The Principality of Wy Crest and Seal

Created by Prince Paul of Wy in 1960 the Crest of the Principality of Wy is an elegant combination of Armorial Bearings having special significance. The Delprat Crest is the central element, and, together with the crown and the Latin enscription; “Ex Municipalis Vincit”, is borne on the Palette Shield, which has artistic provenance, all charges being framed by composite legendary creatures of antiquity. 

This iconic emblem has served as the Official Seal of the Principality of Wy, The Artists’ Principality, since the secession of the Principality in 2004 and is displayed solely by Serene Permission of The Court of the Principality of Wy.


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Heroes of the Art World

Eliza Ashton was a fighter for women’s rights and on one occasion, together with Rose Scott and other suffragettes chained herself to the railings of the NSW Government House. Her husband, artist Julian Ashton, happened to be dining with the Governor, Lord Carrington that evening. Ashton’s fine portrait of Lord Carrington hangs to this day in Government house. Neither husband nor wife was aware of each other’s proximity that evening and related the story later with great amusement.

The present Governor of New South Wales Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC is a champion of the betterment of the lives of women and she has a great love of art. Her Excellency recently held a function at Government House honouring artist Charles Blackman, an occasion which was especially notable for the brave attendance of his old friend Margaret Olley. The Australian art world is since lamenting the passing of Margaret, who though frail, was still vital and painting in her eighty eighth year. Her generosity to the Art Gallery of New South Wales is legendary.

The long serving Director of the gallery Edmund Capon, who has steered that cultural icon for over thirty years, has recently announced his resignation. His rare vision and capacity to bring people together for important artistic endeavours will be sorely missed. Two great contributors to the Australian art world have signed off.

Paul Delprat

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The Perfect Face

In July 2011 Prince Paul received a call from a popular television program broadcast in Australia asking him if he could create a drawing based on the current ideals of beauty.

Paul was delighted to do so. He based his creations; one male face and one female, on perceptions of what currently comprises attractiveness in the popular culture.

He is of the opinion that all faces, young and old, are beautiful in their own way. It is a saying that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Also, as the romantic poet envisioned; “Beauty is truth.”

Prince Paul says that what is perceived by some as ugliness is really in fact character and in any case, as we all know, it is that which is inside that counts.


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British Royal Wedding

British Royal Wedding,   Westminster Abbey   London,  29th April 2011

The Principality of Wy joins with well-wishers from around the world in congratulating young Prince William and his lovely Kate Middleton and hope for all the very best in their marriage. The young couple are an inspiration to many in troubled times.

May they truly live happily ever after.

Romantics everywhere now pause,

Royal weddings are well done.

All lovers now find common cause,

Rich and poor, they are as one.

Every tongue will commentate,

The globe speeds up, high spirited.

Young Wills and Kate – Oh Wills and Kate!

How well we wish you as you wed.

Paul of Wy

30 4 2011: Unable to be in London, The Serene Family and guests watched the ceremony in Westminster Cathedral, as did two billion or more other people around the globe, via the magic window of television, at The Principality of Wy.  They toasted the Royal couple with Champagne. The prince was amused by the queries from overseas commentators; “Are those horses real?” and, “Do they hire those men to dress up as soldiers?”  Prince Paul made the observation  to those at the Principality engrossed in watching the pageantry that;  ”This wedding is a fantastic display of ancient culture and mystery. All those present came away bearing the liniaments of gratified desire.  This they will carry for the rest of their lives.”      Equerry

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