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14 ART COMPETITIONS WORTH FOLLOWING IN 2020

 

Live daringly, boldly, fearlessly. Taste the relish to be found in competition – in having put forth the best within you.

– Henry J. Kaiser

As with many fields of work, whether it may be automotive engineering or sports, competition is what drives innovation. Although it may not seem like it, the same concerns the world of art. Many companies, art institutions and art foundations offer their support in the form of competitions for artists as a result of which they can win money prizes, exhibitions of their work and networking possibilities. These competitions are aimed at a vast range of artists and creators – emerging talents as well as well-established artist who through their work help teach and connect others, spread awareness of difficult topics or preserve traditions which are part of our culture(s). Below, we’ve put together a list of some of the biggest and most renowned art competitions of the past couple of years.

ARTES MUNDI PRIZE

Frequency: Biennial – even-numbered years.

Art type: Any form – works must explore the human condition. Focus on international contemporary visual artists who engage with social reality and lived experience.

Prize: Top prize of £40,000, with runners-up awarded £4,000. The work of short-listed artists is displayed as part of the Artes Mundi exhibition at the National Museum Cardiff.

Eligibility: Open to any artist of any age and nationality. To be considered for the Artes Mundi Exhibition and Prize artists must have already achieved recognition for the quality of their work in their own country or sphere and are on the way to developing a high-profile international career.

Application date/form: 18 months before the exhibition through an online open call.

More information

artes mundi


COLUMBIA THREADNEEDLE PRIZE: FIGURATIVE ART TODAY

Frequency: Biennial.

Art type: Painting and sculpture – figurative and representational art.

Prize: One artist will be chosen to win the First Prize of £20,000 and a solo exhibition. A further prize of £10,000 is awarded by visitors to the exhibition, which takes place at Mall Galleries in central London. Five Shortlisted Artists each receive £1,000.

Eligibility: Open to any artist, eighteen or over, who is living or working in the UK or Continental Europe.

Application date/form: No information.

More information

COLUMBIA THREADNEEDLE PRIZE FIGURATIVE ART TODAY


DEUTSCHE BÖRSE PHOTOGRAPHY PRIZE

Frequency: Annual.

Art type: Photography.

Prize: First prize of £30,000, and £3,000 for the three runners-up, with an exhibition at the Photographer’s Gallery for all four shortlisted candidates.

Eligibility: Artists can be of any nationality and are nominated on the basis of a previous exhibition/publication within Europe.

Application date/form: Nominationas stated above.

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DEUTSCHE BÖRSE PHOTOGRAPHY PRIZE


HUGO BOSS PRIZE

Frequency: Biennial.

Art type: All forms – works that represents a significant development in contemporary art.

Prize: Award of $100,000.

Eligibility: No age, gender, nationality or media restrictions on eligibility. Nominations include emerging artists as well as distinguished professionals who are due recognition.

Application date/form: Nomination basis – as stated above.

More information


ING DISCERNING EYE

Frequency: Annual.

Art type: All forms.

Prize: Sponsor’s prize of £5,000 and Founder’s prize of £2,500. Various other monetary awards down to £250. A key reward for this scheme is the exhibition of work in the Discerning Eye exhibition at the Mall Galleries.

Eligibility: Open to all British artists or those resident in the UK. Artwork must be for sale, and it must be a maximum of twenty inches (50 centimeters).

Application date/form: Each summer through an open call. Selections are announced in September.

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Paul Bonomini "Hive" 2019 exhibition

Paul Bonomini “Hive”, 2019 exhibition


TRINITY BUOY WHARF DRAWING PRIZE (FORMERLY: JERWOOD DRAWING PRIZE)

Frequency: Annual.

Art type: Drawings.

Prize: First prize of £8,000, second prize of £5,000 and two student awards of £2,000 each. Between 60–70 artists are also selected for an exhibition.

Eligibility: Open to all artists resident or domiciled within the UK.

Application date/form: Ongoing online application. Final selection in July 2020.

More information

Trinity Buoy Wharf Drawing Prize 2020


JOHN MOORES PAINTING PRIZE

Frequency: Biennial.

Art type: Paintings.

Prize: First prize of £25,000 with four other prizes of £2,500. In addition, the winner of the popular ‘Visitor’s Choice’ prize will win £2,016 (in 2015). Exhibition at Walker Art Gallery for selected works.

Eligibility: Artists must live or be professionally based within the UK.

Application date/form: Entries for 2020 are closed.

More information

John Moores Painting Prize


LES RECONTRES D’ARLES DISCOVERY AWARD

Frequency: Annual.

Art type: Photography.

Prize: First prize of €25,000. Winner is chosen from a group of 15 exhibitions featuring the work of 15 nominated photographers and artists. There are two additional prizes: The Contemporary Book Award and The Historical Book Award, worth €8,000 each for the best photo books published during the previous year.

Eligibility: Candidates can be of any age and any nationality and are predominantly artists whose.

Application date/form: Open call in April of each year.

More information

A photography exhibition, Rencontres d’Arles, 2010

A photography exhibition, Rencontres d’Arles, 2010


MARK TANNER SCULPTURE AWARD

Frequency: Annual.

Art type: Sculptures.

Prize: The financial award to assist in the production of a new body of work is £8,000, made in 3 payments over the course of the year, at the end of which there will be a solo exhibition at Standpoint Gallery. All reasonable costs incurred for this exhibition will be met by Standpoint, including publicity, transport and hospitality.

Eligibility: Candidates must live and work in the UK. There is no age limit. Candidates must have graduated at least one year previously from formal art education.

Application date/form: Entries for 2020 are closed.

More information

mark tanner sculpture award


POLLOCK-KRASNER FOUNDATION GRANTS

Frequency: Full time.

Art type: Paintings, sculptures and works on paper.

Prize: Grants of varying amounts.

Eligibility: Criteria for grants are recognizable artistic merit and demonstrable financial need, whether professional, personal or both. Artists are required to submit a cover letter, an application, and images of current work.

Application date/form: No deadlines – rolling application program.

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Linh Phuong Nguyen, Mountains, 2009 1 ton of unrefined salt, 157 x 157 inches

Linh Phuong Nguyen, Mountains, 2009, 1 ton of unrefined salt, 157 x 157 inches


ROSWITHA HAFTMANN PRIZEROSWITHA HAFTMANN PRIZE

Frequency: Annual (although cycle may vary).

Art type: Photography.

Prize: Award of CHF 150,000 (£101,671).

Eligibility: No restrictions.

Application date/form: No information.

More information

 


THE JAMEEL PRIZE

Frequency: Biennial.

Art type: Contemporary art and design inspired by Islamic tradition.

Prize: A single prize of £25,000 is awarded to the winner at a prize-giving ceremony.

Eligibility: The prize is truly international. It is not restricted to artists who are Muslim or from the Islamic world, but is open to designers for any nationality, creed or age.

Application date/form: Applications to Jameel Prize 6th edition are open from 18 March – 31 May 2020.

More information

THE JAMEEL PRIZE


THE PRIX PICTET

Frequency: 18 month cycle.

Art type: Photography.

Prize: A single prize of CHF 100,000 and a commission in which a shortlisted photographer is invited to undertake a field trip to a region where Pictet & Cie is sponsoring a sustainability project.

Eligibility: No information.

Application date/form: Entry is by nomination only.

More information

THE PRIX PICTET


TURNER PRIZE

Frequency: Annual.

Art type: All forms.

Prize: £25,000 for the winner and £5,000 for each of the other nominees. Shortlisted artists present works in a show normally held at Tate Britain before the winner is chosen.

Eligibility: Must be a British artist.

Application date/form: Every year, the public can submit an artist nomination on the Tate website. The jury selects the shortlist from their own nominations and those of the public.

More information

Anish Kapoor with his 1992 Turner Prize installation © Tate Photography, Marcus Leith

Anish Kapoor with his 1992 Turner Prize installation, © Tate Photography, Marcus Leith

Put together by Nicholas Bartkowiak