Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award

Ed Burkes

The Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award is one of the country’s largest art prizes for an emerging artist.

The biennial award brings a rising artist to Derbyshire for nine months to create and exhibit a body of work in response to the landscape, heritage and people of the county on the theme ‘A Sense of Place’. Within this theme, the artist is free to pursue their own research and to develop their own artistic practice.

The Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award was established by Foundation Derbyshire in 1998 with the help of a legacy from the estate of the late Jonathan Vickers, a lifelong lover of the arts.

There have been eight winners to date: Lewis Noble (2001/02), Kerry Harker (2003/04), Helena Ben-Zenou (2005/06), Natalie Dowse (2007/08), Bartholomew Beal (2012/13), Kerri Pratt (2014/15), Eleanor May Watson (2016/17), and Ed Burkes (2019/20).

Submissions are now closed Congratulations to the ninth winner, Max Gimson (2023/24)

About the Award

Over the course of the nine-month residency in Derbyshire, the selected artist will produce a new body of work for public exhibition at Derby Museum & Art Gallery and Mall Galleries in London.

In order to do so, the successful artist will receive:

  •  A bursary of £18,000 over the nine-month residency period (£2,000 per month) between 1 October 2023 and 30 June 2024
  • The use of a studio at Banks Mill, Derby, for the duration of the residency and until 30 September 2024
  • A solo, selling exhibition at Derby Museum & Art Gallery, including exhibition catalogue
  • A smaller show at Mall Galleries, London, thereafter
  • Expenses up to £3,000 towards materials, transport, and other production and exhibition-related costs
  • The opportunity to work on an outreach project during the residency
  • Professional development/teaching opportunities, support and mentoring within the University of Derby's BA (Hons) Fine Art programme

Who is eligible to apply?

The Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award is open to painters who meet one of the following criteria:

  • Graduates from either an Undergraduate or Postgraduate degree in fine arts at a UK college in 2019, 2020, 2021, or 2022, and current final year students graduating in 2023. 'College' here refers to Higher Education institutions that offer recognised degree qualifications at undergraduate or postgraduate level. Note that Foundation Diploma courses are not eligible.
  • Those who have completed an alternative learning programme since 2019, and current students completing in 2023. 'Alternative learning programme' refers to programmes that operate broadly as alternatives to BA or MA study.

What is the submission process?

All applications must be submitted online, following which shortlisted artists will be invited for interview:

Step One

Upload up to five example images of your work, your Artist CV, and Artist Statement to the Mall Galleries’ Open Exhibition Submission System (OESS) before 12 noon on Friday 26 May. Note that there is a non-refundable fee of £5 per applicant towards the cost of administration.

Images must be in JPEG format, under 5MB, and represent the style of work you might produce during the residency; please include the guide gallery price of these works, so the selectors know the price at which your work might be advertised for sale at exhibition.

Your artist statement should be up to 500 words and mention:

  • how the award would be appropriate to you;
  • how, in your work, you will address the theme ‘A Sense of Place’, inspired by the people, landscape and heritage of Derbyshire;
  • how you would engage with the local community and what relevant skills and experience you have to contribute.

Step Two

Log in to your account on the OESS from 12 noon on Tuesday 13 June to see if you have been shortlisted for interview.

Step Three

If so, attend your interview at Mall Galleries, 17 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5BD on Monday 26 June. Ideally, interviews will be conducted in person, however virtual meetings will be accommodated where travel is difficult. Shortlisted artists will be asked to provide references and present a portfolio to help with the discussion of their practice during the interview.

The interview panel will comprise Rachael Grime, Chief Executive at Foundation Derbyshire; Alistair Redgrift, Head of FBA Exhibitions at Mall Galleries; Craig Fisher, Derby University; and Griselda Kerr, Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award Committee Member.

Shortlisted artists may request feedback, however we regret we cannot offer this to other applicants.

The ninth winner of the Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award will be announced on the Mall Galleries website at 12 noon on Friday 30 June, before the residency begins on 1 October.

Important Dates

Online submission opens: Monday 3 April 2023, 12 noon

Online submission closes: Friday 26 May, 12 noon

Notification of shortlisted artists: Tuesday 13 June, 12 noon

Interviews with shortlisted artists: Monday 26 June

Winner announced: Friday 30 June, 12 noon

Nine-month residency begins: 1 October

Nine-month residency ends: 30 June 2024

Exhibitions at Derby Museum & Art Gallery, and Mall Galleries: between July 2024 and February 2025, exact dates to be confirmed

Contact Us

If you have any questions about the Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award, please contact Mall Galleries via exhibitions@mallgalleries.com

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