Has Stephen Jesic produced the best wildife artwork in the world for 2020?

Stephen Jesic's painting called Rendezvous, of a pair of Red-tailed Black Cockatoos.

Stephen Jesic's painting called Rendezvous, of a pair of Red-tailed Black Cockatoos.

The name Stephen Jesic may not mean a lot to you, but in the art world he's huge.

He has been named world wildlife painter of the year in five of the past seven years - and if you're a betting man, you'd fancy him to make it six out of eight.

This year's entry is of a pair of Red-tailed Black Cockatoos and, according to Trevor Richards of Morpeth Gallery, it's his best work yet.

And he should know, he sold the artwork this week - $55,000 no less - and has also sold all Jesic's previous entries.

"Last year he won it with a painting of a scarlet macaw, but I think this is even better," Mr Richards said. "He'd be red hot favourite. Everything he enters he seems to win."

WORLD'S BEST: Stephen Jesic.

WORLD'S BEST: Stephen Jesic.

Mr Richards wanted the public know that the artwork, which was sold half an hour after going on display, will continue to be shown for the next couple of weeks.

"The thing with Stephen is that his works are scarce - he usually only does one major piece a year - and they get snapped up quickly and the public never get to see them," Mr Richards explained.

"But the people who bought this were happy to leave it on display here for another couple of weeks so others could enjoy it.

"I just wanted people to know it's an opportunity to come along and see a brilliant piece from the world's top wildlife artist.

"Everyone who walks into the wildlife gallery is immediately draw to it."

If you're wondering how it sold so quickly, Mr Richards said he has art lovers calling up placing orders for yet to be completed works.

LAST YEAR'S WINNER: jESIC'S PAINTING OF AA210

LAST YEAR'S WINNER: jESIC'S PAINTING OF AA210

In this case, the potential buyers knew the painting was about to go up on display, were waiting out front for the gallery to open and snapped it up immediately.

"I had a Queensland skin doctor next in line to buy it if they changed their minds or didn't like it," Mr Richards said. "I had to call him up and tell him he'd missed out, so he'll go top of the list next time."

I asked Mr Richards what made Jesic's work so special.

"He's just so pedantic ... the detail he gets is incredible," he said. "It requires a lot of patience, a lot of skill and accuracy, but you know the finished work is going to be worth the wait."

Which is good, because Mr Richards said there's a lot of waiting involved.

"I ring him up and ask when will it be finished. He'll say another two weeks ... he always says another two weeks. He says another two weeks for months. But then it arrives and you think 'wow, it's worth it'."

This story Is this the best wildife artwork in the world for 2020? first appeared on The Maitland Mercury.