Teenager’s painting stolen from Bayswater Art Exhibition

Grace Coppola’s painting that was stolen from the exhibition. Left: Police released this CCTV image of a man they believe can assist with inquiries.
Teenager’s painting stolen from Bayswater Art Exhibition
Grace Coppola’s painting that was stolen from the exhibition. Left: Police released this CCTV image of a man they believe can assist with inquiries.

A TEENAGER’S excitement at having her artwork displayed in the Bayswater Art Awards and Exhibition turned into anger after it was stolen last month.

Grace Coppola’s watercolour Stripped Bare, worth an estimated $500, was stolen on October 16 from The Rise in Maylands.

The 14-year-old Noranda resident said she had spent three days putting the piece, which was one of her best, together using sketching and painting.

Grace said she felt excited and like a “proper” artist by having her artwork displayed in the exhibition for the first time.

“My artwork had only ever been in school exhibitions or for my own enjoyment, so I wanted to see it in a real exhibition for people to enjoy among all the other amazing art,” she said.

Stripped Bare is about people’s vulnerabilities and trying to cover up these weaknesses.

“That’s why the subject in the artwork is not completely coloured in and why her hair is messy – because she’s vulnerable.”

The John Septimus Roe Anglican Community School student said when it was stolen she was both sad and angry – sad that she may never see it again, and angry that it was stolen.

Grace’s mother Malinda Coppola turned to Facebook to find the missing painting, writing:

“Words really cannot express how upsetting this whole situation has been for our family but especially our daughter who worked very hard on her piece and was really proud of her efforts.”

Ms Coppola said she was “utterly disgusted and disappointed” that this had happened.

Mayor Barry McKenna said it was the first and only unfortunate incident of this nature during the City’s annual exhibition.

Sergeant Warren Greaney said the artwork was stolen on October 16 about 4.25pm and that police wanted to speak to the man pictured who might be able to assist with inquiries.

He said anyone with information should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or Bayswater police on 9473 5500 and quote incident report number 231015 1009 88848.