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The works have been hung, the judges’ deliberations are over and the prizewinners of the New Light Prize Exhibition have been announced.
The winner of the £10,000 Valeria Sykes Award was Broken Brutalism by Mandy Payne. Mandy studied for a BA in Fine Art with the University of Nottingham while working at a NHS dentist. Since 2012, she has been a full-time artist. Her work explores Park Hill in Sheffield, a Grade II* listed council estate and one of Britain’s largest examples of Brutalist architecture. Beyond Brutalism depicts the urban flux which the estate currently illustrates, with some parts of it transformed into luxury flats while other areas remain boarded up and derelict. Mandy uses materials integral to the estate itself to produce her work, namely aerosol paints which reference the graffiti on the buildings and concrete.
Laura Gascoigne, Art Reviewer and Judge, said of their decision: “Given the extraordinarily wide variety and high standard of this year’s short-list, choosing a single winner was a difficult decision but, in the end, Mandy Payne’s work stood out for the originality of its concept as well as its subtle artistry and technical skill.”
The £2,500 Patron’s Choice Award went to Josephine by Newcastle-born artist, Joshua Waterhouse. Stone Pen by Holmfirth-based Emma Lawrenson was awarded the Zillah Bell Printmaker’s Prize, and Harrogate artist Anna Poulton won the Swinton Foundation Prize for an emerging artist, for her work Figs.
The judges chose the winning works from the short-list of 84 by 61 Northern artists. Portraiture, landscapes and abstract works were all represented, with the selection including paintings, prints, sculpture and mixed media.
As Matthew Hall, Director of Panter & Hall Gallery in London and one of this year’s judges commented: “Too many Prize Exhibitions focus on either the concept or the artists’ technical skills to the exclusion of the other; the New Light Prize Exhibition has succeeded in marrying the two and the resulting show is packed with work that epitomises both original thought and excellent application: a breath of fresh air.”
The winning artworks will be on display alongside the other selected works – a total of 84 by 61 artists, with three additional works by Josie Jenkins, winner of the 2013 Valeria Sykes Prize – at the Bowes Museum, Co Durham until 7 February 2016.
The exhibition will then tour to the Mercer Gallery, Harrogate, in February after which a selection of the works will travel to Panter & Hall Gallery, London in June.
All artworks are still in with a chance of winning one of the tig Visitors’ Choice Awards which will be presented to the work which receives the most public votes at each venue.