The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 2018 – Prizewinners Announced

The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition is delighted to announce the Prizewinners of the 2018 Competition. Now in its 31st year, the competition is the largest and most prestigious showcase of contemporary watercolour painting in the UK, and continues to celebrate and reward excellence and originality in the medium of watercolour.

Sophie Charalambous, The Prodigal Son, Watercolour on Khadi paper, 112 x 114 cm

The First Prize of £6,000 has been awarded to London-based artist-designer Sophie Charalambous whose Prizewinning watercolour The Prodigal Son depicts a stylised male figure walking through an eerie farmyard setting – the warped perspective and abstracted forms make the work seem almost theatrical. The artist said that “working from observation and memory, I explore, through drawing, the theatricality of every day places, re-imagining them with a heightened sense of reality and detail.”

Michael Chance, Growth of the Soil, watercolour, ink, honey, gum Arabic, 112 x 86 cm

Royal Drawing School alumnus Michael Chance has received the £3,000 Second Prize for his ethereal mixed media work Growth of the Soil. The artist combines a poetic engagement with landscape and an intellectual interest in perspective, architecture, ecology, systems theory and exo-planetary science. He uses printmaking processes to experiment with material interactions, creating images that are both observational and illusory.

Richard Anthony Elliot, Diving Boards, Crystal Palace, watercolour, 120 x 120cm

The Third Prize of £1000 has been awarded to Richard Anthony Elliott for Diving Boards, Crystal Palace – a painterly interior scene that juxtaposes sharp geometric forms with soft watercolour marks, the minimal palette of subtle blues and greys beautifully lifted by an orange and yellow hue in the foreground. Diving Boards, Crystal Palace is a true celebration of contrasts – in form, in colour, and in tone.

The 2018 judging panel comprised Ishbel Myerscough, artist; Paul Newland, artist; Jennifer Scott, Sackler Director at Dulwich Picture Gallery; James Stewart, Director of Zimmer Stewart Gallery, and Louis Wise, critic and writer for The Sunday Times.

The Sunday Times Watercolour Exhibition will run from 18 – 23 September 2018 at Mall Galleries, London before touring to Guildford House Gallery (10 November – 29 December 2018) and Sainsbury Gallery, Willis Museum, Basingstoke (12 January – 27 March 2019).

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