2016 Exhibitor Profile: Anja Sušanj

Anja Sušanj is an illustrator originally from Croatia. She now lives and works in London where she recently graduated with an MA in Illustration from the University of the Arts London. With a love of books and the written word, she is mostly interested in editorial, conceptual and narrative illustration. Often tackling the whimsical and peculiar, she tends to combine odd elements to create unique compositions. She loves stories of old and often illustrates Slavic myths and legends as well as anything that revolves around Nature, as it is both one of her main artistic inspirations as well as her go-to place for some much needed ‘soul feeding’ relaxation.

Top tip for those entering the Prize this year: ‘I honestly didn’t think about what I should do, but rather what I wanted to show; I thought the work chosen needed to be mature pencil work, but not necessarily any particular style because one can approach pencil in so many different ways while still creating a concise and developed piece.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.


2016 Exhibitor Profile: Chris Agnew

‘Methods of researching, disseminating and re-purposing knowledge lie at the heart of my practice, the content of my projects being informed by interdisciplinary dialogue charged by socio-political concerns.

My output includes drawing, painting, film, floor and furniture design, and a technique I developed involving engraving directly into gesso panels, then applying oil paint in order to reveal the composition. The surfaces of the panels bear many different marks: the traces of sanding, carefully etched lines, deeper gouges and painterly interventions. The conventional technique of printmaking is flipped, as the image bearer refuses to yield any copies of itself.

As information passes through a liminal space, it is subject to mistranslation, misinterpretation and manipulation. The fundamental intention of my practice is to explore the malleable nature of truth in the early years of the digital age, and what role or responsibility artists have in searching for or representing the idea of “truth”.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.

2016 Exhibitor Profile: Apple Wong Hiu Fung

‘Through my art I have always attempted to comprehend the essence of being human. I appropriate subtle gestures and body shapes to interpret certain topics – relationships, independence, eternity, faith… By creating artwork, I explore the private part of the soul.  The individuality of each human being is the most beautiful and unique part of being human.’

Top tip for those entering the Prize this year: ‘Be yourself.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.


2016 Exhibitor Profile: Scott Robertson

‘As an artist my practice is all about squeezing it into the gaps. What I mean by this is that I work pretty much full time for other more successful artists and galleries and have two young children, so my “practice” has to fit into that. I have no set studio, I have a desk at home and when I work overseas I have a hotel room. I have a computer and an A3 & A4 sketchbook. My text drawings can be created in a nice hotel room when I’m away and no kids will come and ruin them! That’s me.’

Top tip for those entering the Prize this year:  ‘My top tip is just to try, that’s all I have ever done. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, but you will never know unless you try.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.

Selectors Announced for the Derwent Art Prize 2018!

Following the launch of the fourth instalment of the Derwent Art Prize in November 2017, Derwent – internationally renowned fine art brand – are pleased to announce details of this year’s selectors.

 The Derwent Art Prize aims to reward excellence by showcasing the very best 2D & 3D artworks created with any pencil or coloured pencil as well as water soluble, pastel, graphite and charcoal by British and International artists. The 2018 selection panel is comprised of Gill Saunders, senior curator, V & A, Chris Sharratt, Frieze contributor and editor of the a-n news website, and Clare Woods, internationally renowned artist. 

Gill Saunders is Senior Curator of Prints at the Victoria & Albert Museum, in the Word & Image Department (WID), which is responsible for the Museum’s collections of prints, drawings, paintings, photographs, designs, digital art, books and archives, including eight of the V&A’s eighteen national collections.  Gill specialises in 20th century and contemporary prints and drawings and her publications include Prints Now (2006); Walls are Talking (2010); Recording Britain (2011); In Black and White: prints from Africa and the Diaspora (2013) and Vintage Travel Posters: Journeys to the Sea (2018).  Gill teaches, lectures and broadcasts regularly.

Chris Sharratt is a freelance arts writer and editor based in Glasgow. A contributor to Frieze and Art & Education, he is also editor of the a-n News website. With over twenty years of journalistic experience, he has written for a variety of publications including The Guardian, The Sunday Times, New Statesman,The Face and Manchester Evening News. Formerly executive arts editor at Metro and editor of City Life, from 2012-14 he was a producer for Sync, a progressive technology programme for the Arts in Scotland.

 Clare Woods is a painter who is essentially concerned with sculpting an image in paint and expressing the strangeness of an object. Originally trained as a sculptor, much of Woods’ work is an exploration of physical form. This understanding of sculptural language and a preoccupation with forms in space, translated into two-dimensional images, underpins her pictorial practice. In much of her previous work, Woods’ concern with landscape has been paramount. However, since 2011 her images have been increasingly preoccupied with conveying the human form. Clare holds a BA in Fine Art from Bath College of Art and an MA in the same from Goldsmith’s College, London. Her recent shows includeLady Midnight at Pallant House Gallery, Chichester; The Drama Triangle at Martin Asbaek Gallery, Copenhagen, Denmark; and Victim of Geography at Dundee Contemporary Arts. She is currently exhibiting Reality Dimmed at Mead Gallery, Warwick; History in the Making at Alan Cristea Gallery, London; and Rehumanising at Simon Lee Gallery, Hong Kong.

The deadline for entries is 5pm on Tuesday 8 May.  To enter, scroll to the top of this page and click on ‘ENTER AWARD’.

Image: Clare Woods in her studio. Courtesy: the artist

2016 Exhibitor Profile: Marcelle Hanselaar

‘Being both an oil painter and etcher I draw a lot. Drawing is the essence of all imagery: it activates the gateway to a free-flow of imagination where things darkly sensed have to find their own, often unexpected language. Recently I have been making pencil drawings on gesso board with washes. My main subject matter concerns what lies beneath the shiny veneer of civilization that allows people to go about their business without thinking about or questioning the horrors that lie a step or two away from the lives that most of us live. For me, an artist’s responsibility is to make people think and reflect.’

Top tip for those entering the Prize this year: ‘Never make a drawing for any other reason than for the adventure of it.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.

2016 Exhibitor Profile: KV Duong

KV Duong is a London-based abstract painter and action artist. His work focuses on personal identity, sexuality and human relationships. He draws from personal experiences growing up in Saigon, Toronto and London where he experienced both the integration and conflict of Eastern and Western cultures and values. Drawing on a background in structural engineering, KV constructs layers of paint, paper and mixed media to investigate texture, form and materiality. In his body paintings, he further extends self and emotional expression by embodying the physicality of space and movement through the use of monochromatic acrylic paint, exploring the intimacy and interaction of skin, canvas and paint.

Top tip for those entering the Prize this year: ‘Have the courage to experiment and break free from the norm.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.

2016 Exhibitor Profile: Mirry Stolzenberg

Mirry’s love of narrative remains at the heart of all the projects she undertakes. Based in London, her work has evolved in various forms comprising 8mm film, animated theatre, drawing, printmaking and large-scale light, sound and time-based installations. Mirry has worked as an illustrator for Tate, been selected as Artist in Residence at The Arts Depot Gallery, London, directed animated theatre and films for Les Marionettes Festival, Paris, and choreographed performance art shows alongside Marvin Gaye Chetwynd at The Royal Academy of Arts. In 2016 she graduated from The Royal College of Art with a Masters in Visual Communication. Undoubtedly, all these endeavours have worked their influence on the artist Mirry is today.

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.


2016 Exhibitor Profile: Chris Milton

‘I have worked in both the fine art and design fields and have lectured in many London art schools. The Derwent Art Prize is a unique event in the art calendar as it covers a tremendous breadth within the field of drawing practice by displaying work ranging from narrative illustrative work to fine art works. My current work explores inner space – the subjective side of memory – using the physical act of painting and drawing to reconstitute a memory. Within that process of rendering and remembering the memory becomes modified, romanticised and probably idealised into an archetype of a person or place or both. I try to avoid limiting interpretation by using words to describe what I paint or draw: ultimately you just need to look and reflect. Just as when you stare at a flower you don’t question what it is about; it just simply “is” and it seduces you into your own floral memoirs. I guess I‘ve made a display of dried flowers that hint at symbolic archetypes, twisted and rooted in the meanders of some romantic past. I try to make “beautiful”, open, poetic things that are evocative of person and place, with the intention of being sincere and romantic, to the point of embarrassment beyond words.’

Top tip for those entering the Prize this year: ‘You can draw a horse to water, but a pencil must be lead… Be original.’

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.

2016 Exhibitor Profile: Ana Sladetic

Ana is an Assistant Professor at the Academy of Arts, Josip Juraj Strossmayer University of Osijek, Croatia. She has shown work in numerous exhibitions – both solo and group – in Europe and further afield, and has won several awards for her work. She has also given several public lectures and run several workshops at a range of cultural institutions, museums and galleries. Combining traditional with modern media, Ana uses optics, light, raster, mechanics or heat to create her work, often using drawing and printing techniques in interaction with video and performance.

The Derwent Art Prize 2018 is now open for entries. Select ‘ONLINE ENTRY’ at the top of this page to begin your application.


First Prize has been awarded to Agim Sulaj for his pencil drawing entitled ‘Refugees’. He was presented with the £6,000 top prize at a Private Awards ceremony on 19 September 2016 at the Mall Galleries, London where all the shortlisted works are on display until 24 September 2016.

Rome based Agim Sulaj, is an artist who has been widely exhibited throughout the world since 1979. Bitingly political, his work has captured the imaginations and consciousness of audiences across Europe, Africa, South America and the Middle East. Through his exquisitely drawn and culturally poignant winning work, Albanian born Sulaj has offered us an artistic image visualising the tenor of the realities of immigration.  ” This work is dedicated to the refugee drama; the people who are in search of a better life often find a tragic ending. Their dreams drown in the big immigration vortex. As the author of this work, I have experienced immigration when I moved to Italy many years ago, where I faced the harsh reality and the difficulty of adapting to the new “world”, where your best friends are the drawing table and the painting brushes.”

The Second Prize of £3,500 is awarded to Essex based artist Lee Wagstaff. The prize is awarded for his graphite drawing ‘Evil’, an intensely toned and detailed work of the roots and branches of trees twisting into each other forming a suffocating natural crypt. He studied at Central Saint Martins and Royal College of Art, London and Kyoto City University of Arts, Japan and has widely exhibited his drawings and large format photographic self-portraits at fine art and performance art venues worldwide.

Tim Wright wins the £1,000 Third Prize. Tim was born in London, where he continues to live and work. The body, the observed world and their expression assert themselves in Wright’s work as is evident in his winning piece Helen Schone 14.  He has worked as a fine art lecturer at most of the principal London art colleges, particularly Chelsea School of Art and Middlesex University. He continues to teach courses in painting at his studio in London and recently taught the actor Timothy Spall to paint in preparation for his role in Mr Turner.

Hong Kong based Apple Wong Hiu Fung for her piece entitled ‘Hiding ’is the recipient of The Young Artist Award (£500) for the best artwork from an artist under the age of 25. A Visual Arts graduate from Baptist University, she has exhibited widely across Asia and was awarded the Hong Kong Clifton’s Art Prize in 2011.  Wong’s commitment to experimenting with a variety of media is clear in her winning piece ‘Hiding’, a captivating coloured pencil drawing on wood board. The delicately rendered image of a man crouching in a forest explores abstract concepts such as isolation and separation.

The skilful works of charcoal, pastel, graphite, water-soluble and coloured pencils will be on display at the Mall Galleries in London from 19 – 24 September 2016. The London show will be followed by a tour to Trowbridge Arts, Wiltshire from 30 October – 19 November 2016.

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