The Derwent Art Prize 2020 Call for Entries

Opportunity Closing Date: 
Monday, February 17, 2020 - 17:00

Derwent, internationally renowned fine art brand, are proud to announce that the fifth instalment of the Derwent Art Prize is now open for entries.

The Derwent Art Prize was conceived in 2012 and aims to reward excellence by showcasing the very best 2D & 3D artworks created in any pencil or coloured pencil as well as water soluble, pastel, graphite and charcoal. Since the Derwent Art Prize began, the competition has attracted more than 10,000 entries from almost 70 countries, with the 2018 edition of the opportunity receiving 3,231 entries from 1,275 artists worldwide.

Derwent are delighted to introduce the selectors for 2020: the artist Charles Avery; the Director of Turner Contemporary Victoria Pomeroy OBE; and the writer and art critic Alice Rawsthorn.

Despite being told by art school tutors to ‘stop drawing’ because ‘drawing is not a masterable art’, Charles Avery has since seen his drawings featured in The TimesThe GuardianThe IndependentThe ScotsmanFriezeApolloFAD Magazine and A-N. Avery is best known for his long-term project The Islanders, which has been exhibited widely and which has represented Scotland at the Venice Biennale. Victoria Pomery OBE is the Director of Turner Contemporary, an art gallery in Margate that presents a rolling programme of temporary exhibitions. Victoria believes that the arts play an integral role in our society and stresses the fact that both the arts and the people who deliver them must adapt to changing audiences and changing times. Alice Rawsthorn is an award-winning design critic and critically acclaimed author. Alice has worked as a journalist for The Financial Times and The New York Times, has held the position of Director at the Design Museum, London, and has participated in multiple global design events including TED and the annual meetings of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

From the total artworks submitted, approximately fifty will be selected for display at the gallery@oxo, London from 22nd April – 4th May 2020. Prizes totalling £12,500 plus a special edition box of 100 Lightfast Pencils will be awarded in a private awards ceremony on the opening night of the exhibition.  We are delighted to announce the introduction of a number of special incentives for young artists: a Young Artist First Prize of £4,000, a Young Artist Second Prize of £2,000, and a reduced entry fee for young artists - just £5 per work. In addition, ten young artists will be selected for an online exhibition which will be available to view for one month on the Derwent website. The exhibition will provide the selected artists with additional exposure for their work to a highly engaged audience.

Derwent is committed to supporting artists in the form of both cash prizes and exposure. For this reason, the 2020 edition of the Prize will see one artist winning an Advertorial Award with Aesthetica Magazine, an international art and culture publication with a readership of over 400,000, and the Young Artist Winner having their winning entry displayed at the Moniker Art Fair, a hyper-curated five day contemporary art fair exhibiting an international roster of the finest artists and galleries at the cutting edge of urban art and culture - in New York in May 2020 and London in October 2020. Derwent is passionate about building both a community and a legacy for the Art Prize. As an exhibitor, the story doesn’t end with the close of the London exhibition; you become part of the Art Prize community which Derwent strives to support through opportunities such as involvement in art fairs and online exhibitions.

Following the success of two French artists – France Bizot, First Prize and Emma Bertin Sanabria, Young Artist Prize - in 2018, the Derwent Art Prize 2020 will be shown in Paris, which will be the first time that the exhibition has travelled abroad. It will be available to view at 20 Rue Saint Claude from 12th – 17th May 2020.

The deadline for entries to the competition is 17th February 2020, 5pm. Artists may submit up to six works that are both original and created in pencil. To enter and for further details including full terms and conditions on entry requirements, please visit:

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