Artworks from the 2017 Archibald Prize went on exhibition at Newcastle Art Gallery on Saturday as part of a seven-stop regional tour.
Coinciding with the launch of this year’s Archibald Prize in Sydney, the works will feature at the gallery for the next six weeks.
Gallery director Lauretta Morton says the exhibition is accessible to all, regardless of their knowledge of art.
"I love its ability to engage such a broad audience," Ms Morton said. "Visitors feel comfortable in an art prize, everyone can walk through the exhibition and use their own judgement to decide if they agree or disagree with the judges' decisions.
"The Archibald Prize has been running for almost one hundred years and has certainly had its fair share of controversy.”
Newcastle lord mayor Nuatali Nelmes says the exhibition is a coveted opportunity, with Newcastle the fifth stop on a seven-venue tour.
"We are so pleased that the Archibald Prize regional tour has returned to Newcastle Art Gallery," she said.
"The annual Prize and the exhibition are eagerly anticipated by art-loving audiences and it is fantastic to have it back in our city."
The exhibition closes on Sunday, June 24.