Friday, April 28, 2017

Discerning Eye (1990-2016) - which artists have shown the most?

In 2016, the Discerning Eye Exhibition of small works celebrated its 25th anniversary. (see my review of the 2016 exhibition ING Discerning Eye 2016 - award winners and review)

The DE people have done a count and calculated that in the first 25 years:
  • 3,563 artists have been selected for the 25 exhibitions and 
  • 12,490 works of art have been exhibited!
What's very interesting is that the website now lists the top 20 artists who have shown work in the shows. Those with a number more than 25 have had multiple works picked in certain years.

What makes this interesting is that these are artists who either have universal appeal over time - or are very well connected to those doing the selection! (i.e. the table does not explain how many were invited to exhibit and how many of the paintings came from selection via the open entry). Whichever, it's still a fascinating list.

Below is the list and embedded in their names is a link to their website. Interspersed are
  • some of my photos from past exhibitions - although I've only been covering them for 10 years. (Below is my own small work - a sketch from the 2007 ING Discerning Eye exhibition - which is one of my favourites. I believe that Mall Galleries enthusiasts will have no difficulty recognising the man with no face!)
  • some quotations from individuals associated with the exhibitions.
Small paintings, at their best, have something unique to offer the viewer - intimacy. Intimacy affords the artist an opportunity to speculate.  Qualities which would normally be inappropriate in a larger work thrive. Small paintings can be exquisite, tentative and fragile. Small paintings can embrace uncertainty without seeming flawed. By the same token small paintings demand a kind of accuracy on the part of the artist, accuracy of intention. | Graham Crowley - top 20 artist and artist selector 2002

"Visual Language"
my sketch in pencil and coloured pencil from my first ING Discerning Eye exhibition

Most Shown Artists at Discerning Eye

Light reflected across the valley - Paul Newland (DE 2015)
oil, 15x15 inches
Joint top with 34 works each are:

The latter two have provided some unique perspectives on art and how to address its modern ills.

First a comment from John Ward in the context of the third exhibition.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A list of recommended picture framers

All artists appreciate a recommendation about a framer. 

You know how this works:
  • if you want a recommendation you need to share who you recommend!
  • if you want the good framers to stay in business, we need to make sure they get asked to do lots of work!
  • plus you do everybody a great service it you provide recommendations on your website for:
    • the materials you like to use and 
    • the framers you patronise because you get a great service 
the studio of an 18th centuryGerman framework gilder

List of recommended picture framers

The next logical step is a list of recommended picture framers. Which is where I come in...

I get absolutely no financial benefit from doing this. Like my blog it's just something I'm doing and sharing - because it helps people

I just know this is information artists need and it works better if there is somebody who provides a list.

So that's what I've done

On my my Art Business Info for Artists website, I have a dedicated page for a List of Recommended Picture Framers
  • These are framers who are recommended by artists who have used them - on the artist's website or blog.
  • they are listed in two different ways:
    • traditional vs online
    • geographical location
At present the listing is limited to the UK and Ireland but there's no reason why it shouldn't include people around the world.

There's just one thing - the recommendation has to come from the artist and there needs to be evidence of a recommendation on his or her website or blog.

View of a framework mill, oil on canvas
You are very welcome to add your recommendations to this list

If you'd like to recommend a picture framer this is what you do.
Complete the form at the bottom of the website page
  • state your name and your email address (ie recommendations cannot be anonymous and can only come from artists)
  • state the name of the Framer, where they are located
  • Identify the URL of a website or blog where you recommend this framer online. If you haven't recommended the framer online then the framer cannot be added to this listing.
By way of explanation, it's more convincing as a recommendation if you also list them on your website and/or have examples of their work on your website.

Who do you recommend as a picture framer?

Below are links to more of blog posts about framing and hanging pictures.

Links to more blog posts about framing

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Preview the NEAC Annual Exhibition 2017

A preview of the New English Art Club's 2017 annual exhibition is now available online.

The exhibition is on display at the Mall Galleries between 16-25th June 2017. All the artwork is for sale

However it's ALSO on display right now as a "virtual online exhibition" via

The annual exhibitions at the Mall Galleries by the art societies belonging to the Federation of British Arts all now have have their catalogue and images online prior to the exhibition opening.

Cover of the NEAC Catalogue for the 2017 Annual Exhibition
In practical terms what this means is:
  • VISIT: you can see very quickly if this is an exhibition you'd like to visit in person
  • COLLECT: art collectors who follow particular artists now tend to buy in advance of the exhibition opening - to make sure they get the artwork they want!
  • BUY ONLINE: those used to buying art online are much more likely to have a good look at what's on offer beforehand - rather than wait for the exhibition opening 
  • GET A BARGAIN!: those on the lookout for "the smart buy" - a great painting selling for a very reasonable sum - are now much more likely to be bought in advance. I'd liken these to the small paintings which always sell well and very quickly at the PV.
  • THINK AGAIN: If you get home and then wish you'd bought the painting you liked, you now have a very easy way of doing something about this.

What you need to do if you want to buy

First check out the paintings and drawings in the exhibition

To do this click on the title below the artwork (i.e. don't click on the image - nothing happens!)

CLICK TITLE below the artwork to see a larger image

This will bring up a page for the artwork which has
  • a larger image
  • details about the artwork i.e. media and size 
  • confirmation of the price
  • a link to more information about the artist if the artist is a member - in this case June Berry NEAC Hon. RE RWA RWS - who is one of the more senior members of NEAC (born 1924) whose drawings and paintings I've been enjoying for many years
  • a form to complete to make an enquiry about the artwork
  • an invitation to "view in a room" - which gives an approximate size rather than exact.

This is the page you will see if you click the title
If you want to buy a painting you like the look of you need to:
  • EITHER email the Mall Galleries using the form which pops up on the page for the artwork (after you have clicked on the title)
  • OR telephone the Mall Galleries on 0207 930 6844 and you will be able to purchase the painting using plastic over the phone.
TIP: I tend to right click on the title to bring up the image in a new tab. That's because the back button on my browser takes me back to the beginning of the virtual exhibition rather than the specific page I'd got to.

If you had the money....

Which artwork would you buy if you had the money?

Monday, April 24, 2017

Jerwood Drawing Prize 2017: Call for Entries

Registration is now open for entries for The Jerwood Drawing Prize 2017 which has a first prize of £8,000.

View of part of last year's Jerwood Drawing Exhibition 
This is the last year of Jerwood's sponsorship of The Drawing Prize project.
  • The project was founded in 1994 as the Rexel Derwent Open Drawing Exhibition 
  • Between 1996 and 2000 it was known as the Cheltenham Open Drawing Exhibition
  • Then in 2001, the Jerwood Charitable Foundation became its principal benefactor. 
It's now a prize in search of sponsor for 2018.

In the meantime the 2017 exhibition for The Jerwood Drawing Prize is seeking entries for and exhibition and somebody to give the prizes to!

Those who entered the Derwent Drawing Prize in 2016 should certainly be taking a look below...

One of the Student Awards 2016
went to the drawings of "dreams and nightmares" by Amelie Barnathan

Jerwood Drawing Prize 2017 - Summary of Key Points

This open exhibition is a platform for drawing practitioners to showcase their work alongside other leading contemporary artists in the field, and provides those selected with the opportunity to help promote a wider understanding of drawing for future generations. 
Second Prize 2016: Sid in Bathtub
ball pen on tracing paper
by Anna Sofie Jespersen
  • The deadline for registration of entries is 17.00 on 28th June 2017
  • Significant cash prizes for drawing
  • Up to 3 drawings
  • Online registration - this is the online entry page
  • Drawings must then be submitted to a number of Regional Collection Centres for drop-off and/or pick-up in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and around the English regions - see end of this post
  • Fees for submission vary between London and the Regions.
  • Work can be for sale - but you need to allow for the 50% commission levied on all sales made at the exhibition(s).
  • Notification of selection will via email by Friday 21 July 2017
For further information and links please visit

Eligible artists - Who can enter

The Jerwood Drawing Prize is open to
  • artists resident in the UK
  • everybody who works with drawing from students to established artists.
Only artists who have registered online by 5pm on 28 June 2017 will be eligible to submit their drawings to the Submission Centre.

The Jerwood Drawing Prize is open to all artists resident in the UK. (So you don't have to be born here but you need to be living here legally.)

Eligible Drawings - What you can enter

  • Work MUST have made since January 2016
  • You can submit up to three drawings (note you can change your mind about how many drawings you're submitting up until 28 June)
  • Composite drawings must be presented within one frame.
  • Work should not exceed 2.5m in any dimension when framed.
  • There are specific requirements as to framing
  • Each drawing must be authenticated by the artist in an appropriate place (eg signed and dated, on the reverse of the work or frame is acceptable). 
Note there is no stipulation as to what you draw with - or what you draw on or how you draw - and this is intentional.

Note that the First Prize in 2016 was won by a video - Singularity by Solveig Settemsdal (b.1984) - see BBC | Video Art wins Jerwood Drawing Prize
"which offers an almost sculptural digital rendering of the transformative and fluid drawing process."

The Selection Panel 2017

The Selection Panel will aim to create an exhibition that explores and celebrates the excellence and range of current drawing practice in the UK.
The Panel members are:
Last year the selection panel viewed 2,537 works submitted by 1,408 entrants over a two-day period.

The Exhibition

Up to 70 drawings will be selected for the exhibition.

It may be less. Last year 61 works by 55 artists were selected for the 2016 Jerwood Drawing Exhibition

The Jerwood Drawing Prize 2017 exhibition will, as usual, be at the Jerwood Space, 171 Union Street, London SE1.
  • The Jerwood Drawing Prize winners will be announced on Tuesday 12 September 2017.
  • The exhibition opens to the public on 13 September and continues until 22 October 2017.
It will then tour to venues across the UK.

The Jerwood Drawing Prizes 2017

  • First Prize: £8,000; 
  • Second Prize: £5,000 and 
  • two Student Awards: £2,000 each 
All four prizewinners in 2016 were women.

  • The second prize was won by Anna Sofie Jespersen (b.1992) for her ball pen on tracing paper work, Sid in Bathtub (studying for a Fine Art Degree at Chelsea College of Art)
  • Two Student Awards of £2,000 each went to 
  • Jade Chorkularb (b. 1971) for "That What They Would Do" a video of real-time drawings during interviews with people being asked what they would do if they only had an hour left to live.
  • Amelie Barnathan (b. 1991). studying for her MA in Visual Communication at the RCA produced large-scale drawings which rendered dreams and nightmares. 

Collection Points

  • London - Wimbledon College of Art 
  • Bath - Bath School of Art and Design
  • Belfast - School of Art University of Ulster 
  • Aberystwyth - Aberystwyth University, School of Art
  • Cheltenham - University of Gloucestershire Hardwick Campus 
  • Glasgow - Centre for Contemporary Arts
  • Leeds - The Tetley 1st Floor Galleries
  • Newcastle-upon-Tyne - Fine Art Department, King Edward VII Building, Newcastle University
  • Norwich - Outside Colman House, University of East Anglia
  • Plymouth - Main reception Plymouth College of Art 

Please note that all Submission and Collection dates and times may be subject to change.

You can see past posts on this blog by reviewing posts tagged Jerwood Drawing Prize

Thursday, April 20, 2017

BP Portrait Award Exhibition 2017 - Selected Artists

This year 2,580 artists entered portraits for the BP Portrait Award - but only 53  from 87 countries were selected for the 2017 Exhibition of the BP Portrait Award at the National Portrait Gallery this summer.

This blog post is about those artists who have been selected to exhibit in the BP Portrait Award 2017 Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery this summer.
the BP Portrait Award 2017 represents the very best in contemporary portrait painting
Here are some numbers:
  • In terms of entries, out of the 2,580 entries from all over the world
    • 1,214 Entries came from the UK - England, Scotland and Wales (47%)
    • 1,366 Entries came from 84 other countries(53%)
  • 218 paintings (8.4%) of the original entries made it through to the final judging session at Trinity Buoy Wharf. 
  • The judges then reduced this number to their selection of the final 53 for the exhibition (representing 2% of the total number of entries).
Alan Coulson with his portrait painting selected for the BP Portrait Award 2017
See the names of the selected artists - organised by the country where they live at present - BELOW - plus:
  • links to their websites and 
  • a short summary of their CV 
  • some photos of the artists and/or their portraits
Allocation to country takes detective work! Where I couldn't work out a country I created a category at the end called "unknown". If anybody spots a mistake with a website please let me know via comment or contact me.

SELECTED ARTISTS ARE INVITED to send me a copy of the image of their portrait - to feature in this blog post - along with a copy of their confirmation email. See the side column for how to contact me.

The Best of the Rest

My commiserations to all those reading this who entered but were not selected for the exhibition
  • My BP "Best of the Rest" will be published on Sunday (subject to receiving enough images of portraits)
  • See my blog post How to enter my BP Portrait "Best of the Rest" 2017 for my invite to those who failed to get selected for the exhibition
  • At the end of the post, you can find links to my posts about selected artists in previous years. Taken together these are an excellent method for studying the type of portraiture which gets selected for this award.

BP Portrait Award 2017 - Exhibiting Artists

Yesterday I posted about the artists shortlisted for the prizes - see BP Portrait Award 2017 - The Shortlist.

Today I must congratulate all those artists who have been selected for the exhibition.

  • LINKS TO THEIR WEBSITES are embedded in their names in the list below (where available). 
  • Previous prizewinners are highlighted in red
  • Those previously selected for the BP have a link to previous portraits (unless they were in those years of the very irritating exhibitor listings where you have to go through all portraits one by one from the beginning and/or there were a lot!)
  • For those without a website see my blog post listed on my Major Art Competitions in the UK page
The Websites of Contemporary Painters in the UK - Get your website sorted BEFORE you enter a juried art competition or miss out on the traffic when the names of selected artists are announced!
The photos below are a mix of
  • portraits sent to me of work selected for this year's exhibition and 
  • images of artists with their portraits due to being selected for previous exhibits.
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