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Rivalry to Revelry: 2019 Art Competitions in South Africa

Posted on 16 January 2019

The "juried process" of art competitions is a necessary career step for emerging artists who want to be considered as a serious artists. Every year, art competitions around South Africa offer artists the opportunity to build and develop their artistic resume as well as win handy cash and other prizes. Art.co.za takes a look at what art competition opportunities are available in 2019.

Phatshoane Henney New Breed Art Competition

2018 Winner, Nkululeko Nkebe

The Free State visual arts competition aims to discover new and emerging Free State-based artists and showcasing contemporary art from the province.

Established in 2016 by Bloemfontein law firm, Phatshoane Henney Attorneys, the firm's passion for creativity and challenging the traditional has enabled differentiation from other law firms and allowed the firm to be recognized as a new breed of law firm.

For more information, visit www.phinc.co.za/art.

National Premier Craft Competition 2018

2019 marks the third year of The National Premier Craft Competition where organisers remain committed to showcasing the excellence in skill of South Africa's crafters, and in levelling the playing field for entrants by making the entry process as simple as possible.

The overall winner will walk away with R50 000, the first runner-up with R20 000 and the second runner-up with R15 000. In addition, there will be merit awards for the Best Emerging Craftsmen, along with sound financial advice to grow their business.

Crafters have until 12 April 2019 to enter. They need simply take a photo of their entry - next to a matchbox for size of scale, and either email it to crafts@innibos.co.za or send it to 071 621 3597 via MMS or WhatsApp. There is no entry fee. Remember to include your name, the town in which you live and your contact details.

Entrants who have not heard from the organisers within 30 days of the closing date must take it as given that they did not make the shortlist for final judging.

The finalists must be available to attend the awards evening on 23 June 2019.

For information, please contact Jan Bhuda on 083 719 1731 or e-mail John Anthony Boerma at artaid@lantic.net. Visit the Craft competition Facebook page.

Sasol New Signatures Art Competition

2018 winner: Jessica Storm Kapp, Mapping Time

An established feature on the art competition calendar, the Sasol New Signatures art competition gives emerging artists an opportunity to submit works that explores issues within society, new media and new modes of expression.

Artists who believe they have what it takes to make an impact in the industry are encouraged to submit one or two artworks at one of several collection points around the country. The competition is open to artists who are 18 and older and have not held a solo exhibition (a body of at least 20 works exhibited in a commercial gallery) except for academic purposes.

Closing date for entries: 19 June 2019

For more information, visit www.sasolsignatures.co.za.

Sanlam Portrait Award

Sanlam Portrait Award 2017 winner, Kate Arthur

Sanlam Private Investments, in collaboration with Rust-en-Vrede Art Gallery, Durbanville, presents the Sanlam Portrait Award. Iniatiated in 2013, the national award celebrates and showcases the best original portrait artwork in South Africa.

This annual competition gives top local artists the opportunity to get invaluable exposure - the top 40 entries are displayed at the Rust-en-Vrede Gallery in Cape Town and thereafter will travel to various museums and galleries throughout South Africa. The winner walks away with R100 000 and the opportunity of a small solo exhibition at the Rust-en-Vrede Gallery in 2019.

Entries open on 1 May 2019 and close on 31 May 2019.

For more information, visit www.rust-en-vrede.com

L'Atelier Art Competition

Marguerite Kirsten, Embodiment, 2018 Absa L'Atelier winner

L'Atelier is one of Africa's most prestigious art competitions. It rewards young visual artists aged 21 to 40 with the opportunity to develop their talents abroad. A look through the list of previous winners will testify to this.

Building on the platform created over the past two years, the competition is continuing to expand across Africa, opening in a number of countries, where Absa has a presence. Artists who are permanent residents of and residing in Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia) are invited to enter.

The L'Atelier art competition is run in conjunction with our partner, the South African National Association for the Visual Arts (SANAVA).

Registration for the competition opens online (artists can submit a minimum of four and a maximum of five pieces of work). All adjudication is now done on the designated digital platform.

Registration opens on 1 February 2019 and can be uploaded until 27 April 2019.

For more information, visit www.lateliercompetition.com.

Cassirer Welz Award

The 2019 Cassirer Welz Award, Olivia Botha

The Bag Factory Artists' Studios, in partnership with Strauss & Co. & the Everard Read Gallery, offer an emerging South African artist, in the field of drawing or painting, under the age of 35 the opportunity to spend a period of approximately 10 weeks at the Bag Factory's studios in Johannesburg.

Previous winners of the award include Blessing Ngobeni, Tshepo Mosopa ,Nompumelelo Ngoma, Asanda Kupa and many others.

The award will provide the recipient the opportunity to interact with the resident artists at the Bag Factory, exchange of ideas, mentorship and develop skills.

Upon completion of the award, the artist will present their newly created work in an exhibition at the Everard Read Gallery.

For more information, email info@bagfactoryart.org

Thami Mnyele Fine Art Awards Competition

Mlamuli Zulu, Lost and Found Dead, Mixed Media / Installation, 2018 Winner

The annual art competition, one of South Africa's oldest national fine art awards, is open to artists of all ages and categories include multimedia and new media, painting, art on paper and sculpture.

Prizes include various cash prizes for each category as well as a mentorship programme solo exhibition offered by Lizamore & Associates presented to the most deserving merit award winner.

For more information please contact the Visual Arts Curator at 011 999 4286 / 4474 / 8727 / 8726 or email: Tshidiso.Makhetha@ekurhuleni.gov.za / Thabo.Sekoaila@ekurhuleni.gov.za

PPC Imaginarium Awards

The awards were established by PPC Ltd as a means to give emerging designers and artists the opportunity to showcase their talent and creative thinking by using Portland cement-based concrete as a primary base or material across the competition's six disciplines, namely, architecture, fashion, film, industrial design, jewellery and sculpture.

For more information, visit www.ppcimaginarium.co.za.

The Tollman Bouchard Finlayson Art Award

2018 Tollman Bouchard Finlayson Art Award winners

This popular and unique national art competition awards a first prize of R20 000, second prize of R10 000, and 2 merit prizes of R5 000 each.

The finalists' works will form the Tollman Bouchard Finlayson Barrel Head Exhibition. These will be exhibited and on sale for the duration of Hermanus FynArts from 7 - 17 June 2019.

Entries must be submitted in a tondo (round) format with a maximum 60cms diameter, including mount or frame. A variety of media will be accepted including paper, canvas, board, perspex, fabric, embroidery, collage, mixed media, photography, digitally/mechanically produced and photo-based.

The deadline for entries is Friday 17 May 2019.

For more information, visit the Hermanus Fynarts website.

Vuleka Art Competition

Artwork by 2018 winner Tiaan van Deventer

Vuleka, from isiXhosa means OPEN

Open to artists who have permanent residency in South Africa, are 18 years or older and have not had a solo exhibition in the past three

Deadline for entries is 12 July 2019 at 16:00. Form more information visit www.artb.co.za.

StateoftheART Gallery Award

2019 StateoftheART Gallery Award winner, Jo Roets

StateoftheART is on a mission to uncover the next art superstar in South Africa and offering one talented up-and-coming artist a R10 000 cash award and solo exhibition.

The competition is open to entrants who are permanently resident in South Africa and aged 18 years or older on the 1 January 2019, and who have not yet held a solo exhibition with a commercial gallery. Local judges will choose finalists whose work will go on show in a group exhibition at the Stateoftheart Gallery Cape Town in September 2019 for a final round of judging.

Unlike other competitions, there is no participation fee, and entries will be assessed on a variety of criteria. The competition's aim is to find artists with a unique 'signature' within a South African context; to showcase artists whose work shows significant potential, who have interesting ideas, a relevant message and who demonstrate skillful execution.

All entrants are required to submit three works which define their theme, signature and aesthetic as an artist. Online entry will close on 30 June 2019 and the finalists announced during the first week of August 2019.

View more information on the StateoftheART Gallery website.

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