Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Call for Entries - Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours 206th Exhibition 2018

The Call for Entries opened last month for the 206th Exhibition of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours (RI) at the Mall Galleries in April 2018.  The deadline for entries is 5 January 2018.
The RI seeks the best in contemporary watercolour and watermedia painting
Always an incredibly popular exhibition which appeals to all ages - this was the Private View in 2017

The RI was founded in 1831 to exhibit the best in watercolour painting and to show non-members’ works alongside that of members, a policy still followed today.

Exhibition Metrics for 2017


This is a summary of the exhibition metrics for the annual exhibition in 2017
  • The open entry generated 1,090 entries from 489 artists (c.2.2 paintings per artist). 
  • 389 paintings by both members and other artists were hung on the walls of all three galleries. 
  • 142 of the works (36%) were by 98 non-member artists (1.45 paintings each) were selected and hung in the exhibition.
  • Members: averaged 2.87 works hung
  • 'Open' artists: averaged 1.45 works hung each
You can review my past blog posts about this annual exhibition (2007-2017) 
at the end of this post.

Call for Entries


In summary, both members of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours and other artists are invited to submit painting for consideration.  
  • Anybody can enter artwork created using in traditional watercolours or water-soluble media
  • All entries are via digital submission
  • The deadline for entries is Noon on the 5 January 2018.
  • The entry fee is £15 per work payable at the time of submitting (£10 per work for artists aged 35 or under).

Details of how artists can apply via the open entry process are set out below.

Information about the Annual Exhibition 2018


The 206th Exhibition will be held at the Mall Galleries between Friday 6 April and Saturday 21 April, 1pm (10am - 5pm every day) - so just over two weeks.

You can find
Another view of the 2017 Annual Exhibition on the Preview Day

Who can Submit


Any artist - over the age of 18 - living anywhere in the world can submit work in water-soluble media to this exhibition.

What you can submit 


  • Number: You can submit a maximum of six works - of which a maximum of four works selected.  Typically it's candidates for membership who submit a large number of paintings.
  • Media: Artwork in watercolour or water-soluble mediums, including watercolour, acrylic, ink or gouache (excluding water-soluble oils) are eligible for exhibition.
  • Size: Works must not be larger than 2.4m high and 1.5m wide.
  • Price: The minimum price is £450

Personally I think it's a mistake to pitch the minimum price at £450 since there are a lot of sales below this figure in other exhibitions. I'd limit how many low priced paintings can be submitted and pitch the minimum price at (say) £250 or £300.  I hope the rationale for this constraint on submission has been based in a rigorous analysis of past sales.....

The Candidates Wall at the RI Exhibition in 2017 - note each has four works hung

How to Submit




The process works as follows
  • Read the general terms and conditions
  • Read the specific entry requirements
  • Register for digital submission - if you have never entered before
  • Login to the Open Exhibition Entry webesite
  • Submit your entry online prior to the deadline (5 January 2018 - 12 noon). You need to complete the form, pay the fee and upload images of work between Monday 2 October 2017 and Friday 5 January 2018, 12 noon [Note: Images must be in JPEG format and under 5MB]
  • Pre-selection is based on online entries and associated digital images 
  • Notification of Pre-selection (12 January 2018)
  • Deliver pre-selected entries to Mall Galleries, 17 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5BD for final selection on 10 February 2018
  • Final selection - in front of a Panel of Members of the RI
  • Notification of Acceptance 13 February - via checking this page to see if your entry number is listed 
  • Collect work not accepted for exhibition from Mall Galleries, 17 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5BD on Thursday 15 February, 10am - 5pm
  • The selectors' decisions are final and no feedback is offered.

Timeline for Open Entries


These are the key dates for all those wishing to submit work to this open exhibition.
  • Submission opens: Monday 2 October 2017, 12 noon
  • Submission closes: Friday 5 January 2018, 12 noon
  • Pre-selection notification: Friday 12 January, 12 noon [Log in to see if your work has been pre-selected]
  • Receiving Day (if pre-selected only): Saturday 10 February, 10am - 5pm
  • Acceptance notification: Tuesday 13 February, 12 noon
  • Collection of unaccepted work: Thursday 15 February, 10am - 5pm

  • Collection of unsold work: Thursday 26 April, 10am - 5pm

Special Note for Artists living/working outside the UK  


  • Artists from outside the UK may need to register for VAT, please check with HM Revenue and Customs: https://www.gov.uk
  • Artists sending work from abroad should use a picture carrier
Artists who are not resident in the UK but are resident in the EU, if your work is sold at the exhibition you have a responsibility to register and account for UK VAT with H.M. Revenue & Customs. Artists without a UK residence (known as 'NETPs' - non-established taxable persons) can find further details on 'NETP' status and how to register for VAT at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk, (HM Revenue & Customs Reference: Notice 700/1, Mar 2014) under the heading 'Should I be registered for VAT?'. Please note: the registration process can take up to 4 weeks. Please address any questions you may have to the VAT Helpline on tel. no. 0845 010 9000 or, if your call is from outside the UK, +44 2920501 261


The Prizes


There are a number of prizes - and prizes look very good on your CV when you are seeking representation with an art gallery!

Monetary Prizes

  • The Leathersellers' Prize: £1,000 awarded by The Worshipful Company of Leathersellers to an artist aged between 18 and 30 years old
  • The James Fletcher-Watson RI Memorial Award: £500 for the best use of watercolour in the exhibition.
  • The Matt Bruce RI Memorial Award: An award of £500 for what is considered the most outstanding use of light and colour in a watercolour
  • The Neil Meacher RI Watercolour Award: An award of £250 for an outstanding watercolour

Art Supplies

  • The Cass Art Prize: A prize of £200 of art supplies from Cass Art, awarded to a work demonstrating the most innovative use of colour
  • The Escoda Barcelona Award: A set of Escoda's finest brushes for an outstanding landscape painting
  • The Frank Herring Easel Award: An easel presented for an outstanding work in the exhibition by Frank Herring & Sons
  • The John Purcell Paper Prize: Paper to the value of £100 awarded to a work chosen by John Purcell
  • The Schmincke Award: A Schmincke watercolour set to an outstanding exhibitor

Other Awards

  • The Anthony J Lester Art Critic Award: A certificate of commendation for an outstanding work chosen by the art critic and broadcaster Anthony J Lester
  • The Debra Manifold Memorial Award: Presented by the Linda Blackstone Gallery, an award for the most innovative work in the exhibition
  • The Dry Red Press Award: The winning work will be published as a greeting card in the Dry Red Press 'Prize Winners' range, with royalties from the sale of the cards going to the artist
  • Megan Fitzoliver Brush Award - a trophy, named The Pipe Fish, awarded for a work that most inspires a connection with the natural world
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ARCHIVE: RI Annual Exhibition 2007-2017


2017
2016
2015
2014
The purpose of this video isn't to give you an in-depth view of all the paintings so much as to give you:
  • an idea of the overall size of the exhibition
  • a notion of how big the paintings are that get selected via the open entry
  • a view of the paintings that were selected this year
2013
This exhibition has always been very popular with the provincial art societies whose members arrive in droves - on coaches!
2012
2011
2010
2008
2007

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