In 1948, Geelong Gallery held the J H McPhillimy and F E Richardson Prizes again, and this year was the first time a female artist won one of the prizes.
Australian artist Nornie Gude was awarded the F E Richardson Prize for her watercolour work The red gate. Swiss-born Australian artist Sali Herman received the J H McPhillimy prize for his work Dan’s place.
The renaissance style lettering spelling ‘Art Gallery’ on the left side of Geelong Gallery looking from Johnstone Park was also added in this year to help visitors find Geelong Gallery from the park.
Among the works added to the permanent collection was Nymphs worshipping a herm, bequeathed by the late Miss E B Batten.
At the time of this work's acquisition, this painting was believed to be a work by Italian Baroque painter Salvator Rosa, and was originally titled Nymphs worshipping Satyr.
After careful inspection of the work's stylistic and technical qualities, it was speculated that it was in fact created after Rosa's lifetime - a theory that was confirmed after the work underwent conservation in 2004. The Prussian blue used in the nymph's attire was not created until 1704, and Rosa passed away in 1673, thus making the true artist of the work unknown.