One Month To Go: Enter the Aesthetica Art Prize

In a celebration of contemporary art, innovative and outstanding works shortlisted from the Aesthetica Art Prize will be displayed in the enchanting setting of York St Mary’sYork Art Gallery’s contemporary art space next spring following the great success of last year’s inaugural exhibition held at the same venue. With only one month left to enter, we take a closer look at this one aspect of the Art Prize which offers both emerging and established artists the opportunity to showcase their work to a wider audience in an innovative and fascinating setting.

Embracing artists of all ages and stages of their careers, the Art Prize is committed to nurturing artist talent and the group exhibition scheduled for spring 2014 provides the perfect way to do this. With entries closing on 31 August, the judging process of the Aesthetica Art Prize will culminate in a fantastic presentation of up-and-coming names in international contemporary art together in one showcase. The 2014 Winner will be announced to an audience of industry figures, fellow artists and special guests at the unveiling the exhibition. Last year’s show attracted a wide range of media attention from across the world, with a BBC news page feature and international coverage particularly focused on 2013 Winner, Australian photographer Damien O’Mara.

The exhibition will feature a diverse collection of work selected from an anticipated 3,000 entrants in the categories of Photography and Digital Art; Three Dimensional Design and Sculpture; Painting and Drawing and Installation and Performance. Eight shortlisted entries will be displayed in the space, with the remaining 92 longlisted pieces projected alongside them.

Set against the medieval backdrop of York St Mary’s, the contemporary art work and historic location combine to present a new visual context and juxtaposition, challenging the notion of the “white cube” and delivering a unique experience and exciting exhibition in it’s own right. 2013 longlisted artist Ilua Hauck da Silva was delighted to have her work displayed in the venue: “I definitely recommend others to enter Aesthetica Art Prize – it’s a great opportunity to have your work displayed in such a beautiful setting and to gain recognition for your hard work. Also, the fact that the Aesthetica team are incredibly friendly and professional makes the process truly enjoyable.”

Originally launched in 2008 as part of the Aesthetica Creative Works Competition, the success of the Art Prize has been growing each year attracting a diverse and innovative collection of work from across the world. Previous finalists include Julia Vogl, who after winning the Aesthetica Art Prize in 2012, went on to win the Catlin Art Prize and was shortlisted for New Sensations – Saatchi Gallery and Channel 4′s Prize – has exhibited at Zabludowicz Collection. Vogl describes the impact the competition has had on her as an artist: “It has been a terrific boost to my confidence, especially at a time where being an artist is fiercely competitive and hard to finance.” Other notable entrants include leading modern expressionist and 2011 finalist Marcus Jansen, who joined a legacy of artists by featuring in Absolut Vodka’s artistic campaigns; and Bernat Millet, finalist in 2012, who has also been shortlisted for National Portrait Gallery’s Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize.

Other prizes include £1000 in cash, six months studio space, six Art Collective mentoring sessions, £250 worth of art supply vouchers courtesy of Winsor & Newton and editorial coverage in Aesthetica Magazine. Entry is £15 for two pieces in one category and the deadline is 31 August 2013. Visit for more information and to submit.

1. Image courtesy of Jim Poyner and Aesthetica.