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Artists have less than five weeks left to apply for The Woon Art Prize

Press release   •   Mar 01, 2017 11:00 GMT

Woon prize winner Holly Hendry

Final year undergraduate artists from across the UK have just over a month to apply for one of the UK’s most generous arts prizes.

The Woon Foundation Painting & Sculpture Prize, jointly hosted by Northumbria University and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art offers an exceptional opportunity for Fine Art students.

The first prize is a £20,000 fellowship with a 12-month studio space in the Woon Tai Jee studio at BALTIC 39 in Newcastle city centre. The year-long fellowship includes mentoring from staff from both institutions and a final exhibition with catalogue at the end of the Fellowship. There are also two generous runner-up prizes of £9,000 and £6,000. Applications can be made via until Monday 3 April 2017.The prize is free to enter.

The shortlisted artists will be selected by a panel of judges including Laurence Sillars, BALTIC Chief Curator; Hilary Lloyd, artist and Turner Prize-nominee; Holly Hendry, artist and inaugural recipient of Woon Foundation Prize; and chaired by Christine Borland, Turner Prize-nominated artist and Professor at Northumbria University.

Up to 10 artists will be shortlisted from the open submission for an exhibition at BALTIC’s project space at BALTIC 39 in summer 2017, with a solo exhibition concluding the Fellowship, at Northumbria’s University Gallery. All shortlisted artists will receive a £300 fee. A further £200 is allocated to each shortlisted artist to cover travel and accommodation so they may attend the exhibition preview and award ceremony at BALTIC 39 on Thursday 29 June.

Professor Borland said: “As the Prize enters its fifth year we are delighted, with our partners at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, to be able to make the offer from the Woon Foundation even more generous. Each of the 10 shortlisted artists are now winners, each receiving a fee and expenses to enable them to attend the exhibition opening at BALTIC 39. The judging panel encourage all final year fine art students to consider applying, what is there to lose?!”

The first winning recipient of the Woon Foundation Prize was Holly Hendry who took up residence in the Woon Tai Jee Studio at BALTIC 39 in 2013. Just four short years on and Holly will show new work at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, from 18 February – 4 June in her first major UK institutional exhibitionWrot. Excitingly, she will also join the Woon Foundation Prize judging panel this year, alongside established artists and curators.

Holly said: “It means a lot to be involved in this year’s Woon prize. I am thrilled to be able to engage with such a variety of works at a pivotal point. As a young artist, leaving the support of university is tough and terrifying. The prize provides an individual with support, space and money, which in turn gives you a precious opportunity for intensive time, research and making without the usual distractions or hurdles. It’s an opportunity for first-hand experience and experimentation at a crucial point of change in someone’s art career, and it’s really exciting.”

She added: “Being supported by both Northumbria University and BALTIC, the prize has a unique position, between a learning environment and a highly regarded institution. I think this combination is a very inclusive approach, and breaks down potential boundaries between learning and the art world, which should be integrated and accessible.”

Northumbria and BALTIC jointly award and present the The Woon Foundation Prize for Painting and Sculpture as an important part of the successful strategic partnership between the two organisations. Now in its fifth year, the Prize is open to all UK undergraduate Fine Art students who are in their final year of study, graduating in summer 2017. Works to be included in the exhibition must be in the mediums of either painting or sculpture. The Woon Foundation Prize is open for applications until Monday 3 April 2017. For full terms and conditions and to enter visit:

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