The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 2017: Winners Announced

The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition is delighted to announce the prize winners of the 2017 Competition. Now in its 30th year, the competition is the largest and most prestigious showcase of contemporary watercolour painting in the UK.

Richard Fowler, Portishead, acrylic on canvas board

The First Prize of £10,000 is awarded to Richard Fowler for Portishead, a vibrant painting which is part of a wider series of work exploring the effects of natural forces on man-made structures. The artist has utilised cut paper ‘masks’ with stencil brushes of various sizes to achieve the sharp edges and textures of corroding steel and decaying wood. Speaking of the work, Fowler says “…the sunlight falling on the rusting steel, contrasting with the intense blue of the sky gives the image a somewhat surreal and sinister quality whilst the stark outlines and rugged shapes are reminiscent of an ancient castle or coastal fortification.”

Elizabeth McCarten, The Boboli Gardens, watercolour on paper

Royal Drawing School graduate Elizabeth McCarten is the recipient of Jackson’s Young Artist Award (worth £500) for her ethereal watercolour The Boboli Gardens. McCarten says that “living in a complex and urban environment, my work often stems from a desire to find freedom, space and simplicity. Finding and connecting to places by creating emotive responses are central to my painting process.” The artist recently completed a residency at Borgo Pignano in Italy where she was able to travel to Florence and make a series of works, including her prizewinning watercolour painting.

Annie Williams, Still Life with a Small Spanish Bowl, watercolour on paper

The St Cuthberts Mill prize for an outstanding work on paper, worth £250, is awarded to Annie Williams for her watercolour, Still Life with a Small Spanish Bowl. Abstraction meets representation in this dynamic work which is occupied by beautiful prussian blue, cerulean and ultramarine tones. Speaking of the subject matter, the artist said “most of my chosen objects are pots – I have a sister and friends who are potters, so have acquired quite a number over the years. I love their shapes and colours.”

The 2017 judging panel comprised Sarah Long, Director of Long and Ryle Gallery; Kathryn Maple, artist and 2016 First Prize Winner; Louis Wise, critic and writer for The Sunday Times and Andrew Wilton, Visiting Research Fellow at Tate Britain. The Sunday Times Watercolour Exhibition will run from 19 – 24 September 2017 at Mall Galleries, London before touring to Trowbridge Arts (11 November – 23 December 2017) and Guildford House Gallery (13 January – 10 March 2018). Click here to view all the works selected for this year’s exhibition.

.ART celebrating watercolour: 21 September 2017, 6-9pm, Mall Galleries, London. 

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition, .ART are inviting you to an exclusive watercolour event at Mall Galleries, London. Taking place against the backdrop of the 2017 exhibition, guests will experience the diversity of watercolour through masterclasses and demonstrations from some of the UK’s leading watercolour artists. The event is free but spaces are limited and booking essential, please RSVP to watercolour@parkerharris.co.uk.

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