Art Competitions in the UK

Written by jessica ann marie
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Art Competitions in the UK
Art competitions are an ideal opportunity for emerging artists to gain recognition. (gallery image by MATTHIEU FABISIAK from

Art competitions are an ideal opportunity for artists of all experience, style and medium to showcase and gain recognition for their work. There are numerous competitions running in the United Kingdom, which are open to submissions from artists from all walks of life. While the money prizes are an undoubted bonus, the most important thing gained from these competitions for most artists is the chance for others to enjoy and appreciate your artwork.

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Royal Academy's Summer Exhibition

The annual Royal Academy's Summer Exhibition is one of the largest open submission contemporary art competitions in the world. The Summer Exhibition was first held in 1769 and, as of 2010, is based in Burlington House, Piccadilly, London.

The competition accepts work in all forms of media, including painting, photography, sculpture, architecture and film. Work from both new and established artists is encouraged. An artist may submit up to two works and is charged a small fee for submission. Around 1,000 works are ultimately chosen for display--most of which go up for sale.

Royal Academy of Arts

Burlington House


London W1J 0BD


John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize

The John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize was first held in 1957. The competition is open to paintings by U.K. artists of all experience and style. It is a biennial event that culminates in the winning pieces--which are chosen anonymously by a jury--being displayed at an exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool, England.

Walker Art Gallery

William Brown Street

Liverpool L3 8EL


EAC's Over 60s Art Awards

The EAC's Over 60s Art Awards has run since 1994. The competition was started with the intention of celebrating the work of older, amateur artists. Around 27,000 artists have submitted work since its launch. Submissions of all themes and mediums--including painting, ceramics, textiles and photography--are accepted from those between ages 60 and 100. Group works are also accepted. Chosen pieces are ultimately exhibited in galleries around London.

Elderly Accommodation Counsel

3rd Floor, Albert Embankment

London SE1 7TP


The National Open Art Competition

The National Open Art Competition is an annual art competition that is run by the Chichester Art Trust. Entrants to the National Open Art Competition must live in the United Kingdom. Artists are allowed to submit up to six pieces in the mediums of painting, drawing, print making, photography and multimedia, which can be wall-hung. Chosen artwork will be curated at an exhibition at the Minerva Theatre, where numerous money prizes are handed out.

Chichester Art Trust

Hambrook Business Centre

Cheesmans Lane

Hambrook, Chichester

West Sussex PO18 8XP


The Open West

The Open West is an annual art competition based in Gloucestershire. The Open West welcomes submissions from both U.K. as well as international artists practicing contemporary and conceptual art. The competition accepts mediums of painting, installation, film, photography, print and sculpture. Artists must be over the age of 21 in order to take part. Selected artists will be curated in an exhibition, and there is a major prize award of £1,500.

The Open West

PO Box 344



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