The 2020 Derwent Art Prize winners share their experiences

The deadline to enter the Derwent Art Prize 2020 is fast approaching. Artists worldwide are invited to submit their work until Tuesday, 4th January 2022, 5pm GMT.

In the meantime, let’s take a look back at the 2020 edition of the Derwent Art Prize… In today’s blog, our 2020 prize-winners share their experience taking part in the exhibition. We hope their insights will encourage and help you with your 2022 submissions!

Image: (above) Katie Sollohub drawing ‘Blue Bedchamber’ photographed by Sarah Ketelaars
Image: Blue Bedchamber by Katie Sollohub

First Prize winner Katie Sollohub entered the Prize on the suggestion of her friend and fellow artist, Emily Ball – who also entered and got shortlisted:

“I was pleased that we were encouraged to enter several pieces, and that the additional cost was minimal. This enabled me to pick work I felt supported each other and showed my drawings at their best” says Katie Sollohub.Any artist passionate about drawing should apply for the Derwent Art Prize.

“I never expected to win the First Prize” Katie confesses.This brought a lot of attention to my work. In fact, the winning drawing could have been sold three times! The prize arrived in a time of such uncertainty and offered me the confidence to trust in the power of my work.”

Image above: Maree Hughes ’15’

Second Prize winner Maree Hughes believes any competition which champions drawing is worthy of supporting:

The Derwent Art Prize is fantastic opportunity to get your work shown further afield and to see it in a broader contextshe adds.

“Being shortlisted has definitely made a difference to my confidence towards my work. When I found out I won Second Prize I was absolutely delighted, given all the other fantastic entries in 2020” the Scottish artist concludes.

Image: Oluwatobi Adewumi ‘Doublesided
Image: Faye Bridgewater ‘Studying Murmurations’

As the public voted for their favourite works in the exhibition, Brighton-based artist Faye Bridgwater and US-based Oluwatobi Adewumi both won the 2020 People’s Choice Awards.

Would they recommend artists to apply this year?

“Yes!” says Oluwatobi.World-class art prizes like this motivate you to keep making work and showcasing it.”

“Absolutely” Faye agrees.You’ve got to be in it to win it! The entire experience has been fun… and brilliant for my career.”

Image: Xuetong Wong ‘Dog Walker’

The Derwent Art Prize looks to support artists at all stages of their career – in particular young artists under 25, who benefit from a reduced entry fee and two dedicated prizes.

2020 Young Artist First Prize winner Xuetong Wong sends out an encouraging message “I definitely recommend all artists to apply. The Derwent Art Prize offered me a valuable platform to promote my work and network with other artists.”

Do you want to follow in Katie, Maree, Faye, Oluwatobi and Xuetong’s footsteps? You can make your mark and enter the 2022 edition of the Derwent Art Prize here.