People will be invited to vote when the Surrey Artist of the Year competition exhibition comes to the New Ashgate Gallery in Farnham from September 24 until November 5.
This free exhibition will be open from 10.30am to 5pm Tuesday to Saturday. There will be a private viewing on September 23 from 6pm to 8pm and an awards ceremony announcing the winner on October 27 from 7pm to 8pm. There will be free family and adult art and craft workshops with leading artists and makers in October half-term.
The contest is a partnership between the gallery and Surrey Artists Open Studios to celebrate the wealth of creative talent in Surrey. It is supported by the Surrey Art Fair and Loxley Arts.
Since 2009 this aspirational exhibition has offered a collective of local quality arts and crafts as voted for by the public in open studio visits.
The top scoring artists come together for a programme of events. There will be a wide variety of artworks on show, including different materials and techniques such as painting, drawing, textiles, ceramics and paper art.
The shortlisted artists are Caroline Bond, Barbara Bradshaw, Sinéad Fox, Georgie Gardiner, Annabel Hocking, Christine Hopkins, Diana King, Joanna Lloyd, Julie Matthews, Faye Mayo, Peg Morris, Lucy Dorothy Nichols, Julie Patton, Sue Ransley, Sarah Rawlins, Sue Roche, Alison Saunders and Sonya Vine.
During the exhibition, until midday on October 27, members of the public will be encouraged to vote for an artist. The artist with the most votes from the public and the judging panel will be named Surrey Artist of the Year 2023.
The winner will receive a bursary of £1,000, a solo show at the New Ashgate Gallery and a complimentary winner’s stand at the Surrey Art Fair as well as a £100 Loxley voucher. The runners-up will receive £25 Loxley vouchers. The Guildford, Farnham, Woking and Surrey Downs magazines are the official media sponsors.
Surrey Artists Open Studios programme manager Caitlin Heffernan said: “The Surrey Artist of the Year competition raises the profile of Surrey-based artists as well as providing them with professional development and support to build an audience for their work.
“Our partnership with the New Ashgate Gallery provides a highly valued opportunity for artists to work with a contemporary art and craft gallery to develop their practice and promote their work.”
Gallery director Dr Outi Remes added: “Surrey Artist of the Year invites the public to become a curator and vote for their favourite artist. It is a wonderful way to support your local talent.”