Wed. Feb 21st, 2024

The Sixth John Ruskin Prize

By mossbeachartworks Feb 9, 2024 #6th #John #Prize #Ruskin

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Yesterday I went to the exhibition for
The Sixth John Ruskin Prize at Trinity Buoy Wharf – and I used to be VERY impressed! 
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND paying this a go to for those who like paintings which has been made by considerate artists who make you assume!

Under you will discover out about:

  • what’s the John Ruskin Prize
  • why it is price a go to 
  • see it
  • who gained the prizes on provide
  • names of artists shortlisted for the exhibition

What’s the John Ruskin Prize? (In a nutshell)

Chosen from over 4000 entries, the ultimate shortlist of 78 items from 68 artists, makers and innovators have been given a platform for the unseen to be seen and the unstated to be heard. 

The John Ruskin Prize:

  • is a multi-disciplinary biennial artwork prize within the UK
  • was inaugurated in 2012 by The Guild of St. George and visible literacy charity, The Large Draw
  • Entry is eligible for all artists, designers and makers – particularly
    these whose paintings defies simple categorisation
  • encourages entries in a big selection of media
  • requires all submissions to reply to the theme of the biennial
  • The judging panel consisted of Narinder Sagoo MBE, Cornelia Parker CBE RA, Bob and Roberta Smith RA, Gary Hill, Julian Stair OBE, Dr Rachel Dickinson and Jane Barnes.
  • Organised and delivered by The Large Draw

The prize goals to mirror a central thread of John Ruskin’s thought;
as a author and artist – and as an impassioned critic, not solely of artwork
however of society and life – he believed that artwork has the ability to disclose
and have a good time common truths, and {that a} good artist and maker in
any medium ought to all the time be guided by that search.

The Prize used to carry an exhibition each different 12 months – however the pandemic
made positive that did not occur so that is the primary one since 2019.

These are hyperlinks to the previous exhibitions on The John Ruskin Prize
web site

The Sixth John Ruskin Exhibition

In abstract:

  • Artists had been invited to reply to the theme for the Sixth John Ruskin
    Prize Exhibition in 2024, Seeing the Unseen, Listening to the Unstated. This may very well be explored and interpreted in many alternative methods. 
  • Paintings for the 2024 Exhibition was chosen from over 4000 entries
    from UK and worldwide artists. You’ll be able to
    see the Judges right here.
  • The ultimate  shortlisted artworks of 78 items from 68
    artists, makers and innovators will be seen at The Buoy Retailer, Trinity
    Buoy Wharf, till February seventeenth (extra particulars under)

Entries had been welcomed from artists, designers, architects and makers, at
all phases of their careers. For the primary time, entries had been open

  • the medium of pictures 
  • creatives throughout the globe (however solely in respect of digital entries).

Why this exhibition is price a go to

The 2024 John Ruskin Theme – Seeing the Unseen, Listening to the Unstated

The theme for the Sixth John Ruskin Prize

One of many necessities of this exhibition is that ALL artworks should reply to the set theme. 


The exhibition theme is a significant attribute of The John Ruskin Prize. 

  • It’s totally a lot NOT only a “ship us your paintings” exhibition. 
  • Therefore, by definition, it appeals to a sure sort of artist who has no drawback creating paintings primarily based on an idea.

It additionally signifies that the exhibition can embody paintings which touch upon present or latest topical points.

The usual of paintings on this exhibition is uncommon. By way of thoughtfulness, creativeness and creativity, for my part, it far exceeds paintings sometimes seen in most open artwork exhibitions. 

That’s I’ve seen work pretty much as good in different exhibitions which is pretty much as good – however usually it has been  surrounded by heaps extra which aren’t pretty much as good.

Curiously, I did not discover something which made me react within the standard “that is simply so silly” mode related to a lot modern artwork which includes meeting fairly than making. (Turner Prize 2023 for instance – which ignored the gorgeous and significant Windrush drawings of Barbara Walker).

Plus there have been a lot of artworks I actually favored.

My favorite comprised three etchings by JG Fox. They embody modern artworks as in the event that they had been historical “discovered” artworks. You’ll be able to see them higher on his web site as 

The vital info is contained within the description of what’s offered on every etching. They’re very intelligent as a result of they appear to be one sort of paintings and are literally one thing else solely.

What’s actually fascinating is the very many alternative ways in which folks interpret the theme – which can be mirrored within the number of media they use.

Not one of the paintings is on the market – however every has a sizeable label (subsequent to or close to the paintings) which gives the artist’s clarification of how the paintings suits the theme and sometimes the way it took place. I acquired a whole lot of satisfaction out of studying the reason after finding out the paintings – after which going again once more and looking out on the paintings after I would learn the artist’s phrases.

In case you like going spherical an exhibition slowly and studying all of the labels then that is the exhibition for you!

Media on show

20.22 by Nick Grellier

One of many fascinating facets of the exhibition is the big selection of
media used to create the assorted artworks.

It’s because the John Ruskin Prize not solely goals to draw entries from
a variety of artists and makers it additionally encourages use of a wide range of
media to create artforms – together with

  • Animation
  • Ceramics
  • Collage, in all supplies together with pictures
  • Mixed work utilizing each conventional media and digital components
  • Digital artworks
  • Drawings, in all codecs
  • Movie / Video
  • Glasswork in all varieties, resembling stained glass or engraved glass
  • Set up
  • Metalwork, together with gold and silversmithing and heavy metalwork
  • Work, every kind and in all codecs
  • Performative work, offered in a movie format
  • Pictures
  • Photographic components, together with these manipulated or collaged
  • Print, together with etching, printmaking and lettering in all mediums
  • Sculpture, together with lettering in all mediums
  • Sculptural work with movie/ animation components
  • Textiles and material
  • Typography and Calligraphy
Oracle by David Aston
synthetic intelligence future prediction simulator
(with a BIG signal saying “don’t contact”)

The one facet which did not work for me had been the movies – and that was as a result of they had been being proven on a loop in a special room and a few had been lengthy – so I spent a couple of minutes after which exited….

I feel the presentation of movies wants a rethink – one thing alongside the traces of iPads embedded right into a presentation wall possibly?

Find out how to see the Sixth John Ruskin Prize Exhibition

The Buoy Retailer at Trinity Buoy Wharf

The Sixth John Ruskin Prize Exhibition is being held 

Talking personally, I took the Docklands Gentle Railway to Canary Wharf after which caught the D3 bus from the North Collonade and acquired off on the finish of the route – which makes for the shortest stroll!

The Sixth John Ruskin Prize Winners

John Ruskin Prizewinners
(left to proper) William Bacon, Blythe Plenderleith and Curtis Holder

For very a few years, I’ve solely ever lined these artwork competitions with a primary prize of no less than £10k – however because the demise (each pre and publish pandemic – see The Disappearing Artwork Competitions) of many of those artwork competitions I am now getting extra interested by these – resembling this one – with smaller pots of prize cash AND which ship and exhibit fascinating paintings.
5 winners have obtained prizes totalling £8,000 – though the primary and second prizes have been mixed after which halved due as a result of having two first prizes. 

Prizes had been awarded on Wednesday thirty first January on the preview of The Sixth John Ruskin Prize shortlist exhibition. 

My solely remark in regards to the prizes is that I feel this exhibitions deserves extra sponsors who can contribute extra prizes and additional cash for these prizes!

Under are the prizewinners. Hyperlinks to their WEBSITES are embedded of their names.

Joint 1st Prize (£2500 every)

Relatively than having a primary and second prize for these aged 26 and above, the Judges opted to have two first prizes.  The 2 first prizewinners are:

  • Will You Hear Me? – Curtis Holder and 
  • Fortunate Quantity 7 / Confetti – William Bacon 

Will You Hear Me? – Curtis Holder

Joint First Prizewinner £2,500
Will You Hear Me? by Curtis Holder 

Will You Hear Me? is a part of a sequence of portraits titled The Speak, exploring intimate conversations between black males. The rawness of the dialogue between artist and topic is expressed by way of unapologetic, unaltered pencil traces, which hint the journey of the dialog and reveal the layers of a shared lived expertise. ⁠

Right here, the three portraits of Mike signify a breadth and depth of emotion typically neglected in younger black males; an assertive stance preoccupied with the skin world; a tentative but tender second; and a relaxed, contemplative gaze. The figures – and the febrile traces that kind them – problem us to look past the apparent in the hunt for society’s unstated narratives.⁠

I photographed Curtis Holder two weeks in the past in entrance of one other one his giant and spectacular drawings in colored pencil on the Personal View of The Pastel Society the week earlier to this presentation. There his drawing of ‘The Puppet Maker’ made him the inaugural winner of the Tom Coates Memorial Award 2024 (see Overview: The Pastel Society a hundred and twenty fifth Annual Exhibition (2024))

Curtis Holder was born in Leicester in 1968. He studied Graphic Design at Kingston College and accomplished postgraduate research in Character Animation at Central Saint Martins, London. He’s a member of Up to date British Portrait Painters (CBPP) and an Affiliate Member of the Society of Graphic Superb Artwork (SGFA). He subsequently grew to become a main college instructor however has now gone full time as a London primarily based artist who works primarily in graphite and colored pencil to create large-scale portraits and figurative works on paper.  


Fortunate Quantity 7 / Confetti – William Bacon

Joint First Prizewinner
Fortunate Quantity 7 / Confetti – William Bacon

The ‘Confetti’ set up includes of two artworks. The primary, ‘Lucky Number 7’ is made solely from used Nationwide Lottery scratchcards collected from a single participant. Roughly 100 playing cards had been used to assemble this paintings; distorting the unique picture by slicing and layering the items. ⁠

The second piece is a group of shavings left behind after a card has been scratched – gathered within the final three years from discovered and donated playing cards. The shavings have a foil-like high quality and are an array of various colors, like confetti. Confetti itself symbolises a celebration, nevertheless on this setting, the pile represents moments of discarded hope which have handed by way of the arms of strangers.⁠

William Bacon is a British visible artist who works primarily with discovered objects that assist him  interrogate the traces of recent tradition. He’s significantly drawn to working with discovered and discarded objects whose surfaces describe a singular historical past and carry traces of human interplay. 

His scratchcard works, constructed from non-winning collections of customers playing cards, ponder on the formation of pseudo-languages by way of gesture, repetition and anonymity.⁠

He obtained his BA Hons in Superb artwork on the Manchester Metropolitan College the place he was awarded the 5Plus Artistic New Expertise Award (2016).

The Alan Davidson Basis Beneath 26 Prize (£1000)

Winner of The Alan Davidson Basis 

Beneath 26 Prize (£1000)

Mattress of Hails – Blythe Plenderleith

Blythe Plenderleith studied BA Hons Sculpture and Environmental Artwork on the Glasgow Faculty of Artwork (2017-2021). After reaching a primary in her BA, Blythe was awarded The Cass Artwork Scholarship to finish her MA in Sculpture on the Royal Faculty of Artwork (2021-2023), the place she additionally gained a distinction for her thesis inspecting notions of perfection and making-do. She has additionally exhibited at RSA New Contemporaries 2023, Edinburgh, the place she was the recipient of the Fleming-Wyfold Artwork Basis Award 2023.


The Worldwide Prize (£1000)

This prize went to a digital photographic submission by a global artist – so two firsts in a single prize. The topic of the prize actually deserves opening up the exhibition on this method.

Winner of The Worldwide Prize (£1000)
Sleep within the Kingdom of Dust
Muhammad Amdad Hossain 

Many households within the coastal space of Bangladesh have misplaced their houses and property as a result of frequent floods, river erosion and different pure disasters. They’re compelled emigrate to cities in the hunt for a greater future. These households haven’t any shelter in huge cities. Their kids’s days start within the dust heap and finish on the highway or boat with nowhere to go.⁠

Muhammad Amdad Hossain (24) was born in Chittagong in Bangladesh. He has gained over 150 worldwide awards for his pictures. 

By his lens, he captures the poignant struggles of these affected by pure disasters, compelling governmental motion for lasting options. Amdad’s core goal as a photographer is to immortalize life’s fleeting moments, infusing them with enduring significance.⁠

The 2024 Kate Mason Prize for Innovation (£1000)

This was awarded to a different worldwide artist Wyatt Carson for Mary: By Glass 

I noticed this within the video room – and thought it was fairly one of the best animation I’ve seen in a while.

Busy vehicles, dotted distant home windows and aimless lights make up a metropolis by way of the whimsical perspective of an indoor cat. Mary: By Glass tells the story of a curious cat who finds the corporate of an imaginary good friend extra intriguing than the neighborhood cats, remaining mysterious and desired by others. Town round her is assembled with summary shapes by way of the lens of Mary, typically mimicking cat-like options and solely revealing themselves as actuality by way of the refined reflections of it.⁠

Initially from Lawrence, Kansas, Wyatt Carson works in stop-motion animation, printmaking, portray and poetry. Carson’s artwork apply embraces experimentation, curiosity, and imperfection, and takes inspiration from 1970’s Soviet animation, American folks artwork and German expressionism. Entities resembling shadows, vehicles, nature, climate, and Mary (their cat) variously enact Carson’s explorations of psychological well being, magnificence, household, gender, and love. Carson’s work is devoted to discovering the emotional roots of the issues that catch their eye.⁠

Shortlisted artists

These are the names of the shortlisted artists. Within the final 18 years I’ve performed many shortlisted artists posts the place I discovered and embedded all of the web sites of the artists. I do not do this anymore – however for those who contact me with the identify of your paintings and your web site or social media account the place I can see it I am going to add it in.

The shortlisted artists are:

  • Lydia Adams, 
  • Francesca Alaimo, 
  • Chris Alton, 
  • Keith Ashcroft, 
  • David Aston,  
  • Sally Baldwin, 
  • William Bacon,
  • Max Bainbridge, 
  • Jared Barbick, 
  • Julie Barnes, 
  • Claudia Barreira, 
  • Alyson J Barton, 
  • Kirsty Bogle, 
  • Caroline Burraway,
  • Blair Cahill,
  • Duncan Cameron, 
  • Thomas Cameron, 
  • Lorsen Camps, 
  • Wyatt Carson, 
  • Dorcas Casey, 
  • Francesca Centioni, 
  • Abby Cocovini, 
  • Kerry Collison, 
  • Hanfei Dyson, 
  • Belinda Ellis, 
  • Donna Fleming, 
  • Alan Fortescue,  
  • J. G. Fox
  • Sarah Gillespie 
  • Julie Graves, 
  • Eddy Greenwood, 
  • Nick Grellier,  
  • Simone Guideri, 
  • Frances Gynn,
  • Eithne Healy,
  • Sally Hewett, 
  • Fiona Hodges,
  • Curtis Holder, 
  • Daniel Hosego,
  • Muhammad Hossain, 
  • Linda Hubbard,
  • Zoja Kalinovskis, 
  • Olga Kataeva-Rochford, 
  • Scott Kelly,  
  • Antoni Kuźniarz, 
  • Anna Larin, 
  • Matt Lee, 
  • Olana Gentle,
  • Emily Lucas,
  • Pinkie Maclure, 
  • Kate Mcdonnell, 
  • Elias Mendel
  • Pascal Miehe, 
  • Sally Muir,
  • Blythe Plenderleith, 
  • Julia Polonski,
  • Helen Restorick,
  • Isobel Scarsbrook, 
  • Katy Shepherd, 
  • Graham Brief, 
  • Trudie Shutler, 
  • Lucy Stopford, 
  • Ruth Swain, 
  • Rhys Thorpe, 
  • Patricia Townsend, 
  • Zac Weinberg, 
  • Maayan Sophia Weisstub, 
  • Elmira Zohrehnejad


John Ruskin

For extra about John Ruskin:

Earlier posts in regards to the John Ruskin Prize on Making A Mark

‘ Credit score:
Unique content material by – “The Sixth John Ruskin Prize”

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