Shortlist Announced: Robert Walters Group UK Young Artist of the Year Award

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We are delighted to announce the ten finalists for the Robert Walters Group UK Young Artist of the Year Award: 2019. We had a fantastic response to the inaugural award; receiving 500 submissions from across the UK and from a breadth of different practices.

The ten finalists demonstrate a strong and original voice in their practice, and display exceptional artistic quality. These artists are creating bold, unique pieces of art that reveal their own perspectives and embody the experiences of their community. They represent the UK’s richly diverse population and reflect the award’s brief: diversity of experience; diversity of expression; diversity of thought.

With thanks to our judges: Philippa Adams - Senior Director of Saatchi Gallery, Robert Walters – CEO of Robert Walters Group, Gavin Turk - artist, Michael Forbes - artist, and Rosalind Davis - artist, writer and UKYA alumni. 

The finalists’ work will be exhibited at the Saatchi Gallery, London for an awards presentation, curated by Garth Gratrix. The prize winner and runner-up will be announced on Monday 7th October.

Congratulations to the finalists, and thank you to all that applied!


 
Azraa Motala Headshot.jpg
I beg you to define me, Constrain me in your warped ideology, Feel entitled to my identity, Project your prejudice on to me. I am more than you perceive, I will not submit to your ideals, I do not need your liberation, I am reconstructions anguish.

I beg you to define me, Constrain me in your warped ideology, Feel entitled to my identity, Project your prejudice on to me. I am more than you perceive, I will not submit to your ideals, I do not need your liberation, I am reconstructions anguish.

 

Azraa Motala

Azraa Motala is a North-West based artist and recent graduate from the Chelsea College of Arts. She creates conceptual representational work which relates to herself as a young British-Asian Muslim woman within the contemporary Western space. She seeks to untangle culturally inherited expectations, and the overlapping aspects of her identity; providing an intimate narrative on the many cultural blankets making up the social stratum. Utilising both photography and painting to self represent in a society where the bodies of South Asian and Muslim women are often considered pawns in political discourse. Essentially empowering and uplifting women of colour through work which touches upon the mutual struggles of many second and third generation immigrants.


 
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The Fragile Texture of our Desires

The Fragile Texture of our Desires

 

Camilla Hanney

Camilla Hanney (Irish b. 1992) is a recent graduate of the MFA programme at Goldsmiths University. In 2015, she graduated from Institute of Art Design and Technology, Dublin with a first class BA honours degree in Visual Arts Practice. Her work was selected for showcasing at the 2014 and 2015 RDS student art awards exhibitions in Dublin. She was the recipient of the Ormond Studios Graduate Award in 2015 which culminated in a solo show. Her exhibition, Resurrecting Monuments to Moral Degradation, marked the end of her 2016/17 residency at A4 Sounds. Since moving to London, her work has been exhibited by a diverse range of galleries including SLG as part of Bloomberg New Contemporaries. She is the 2019/20 recipient of the Sarabande studio award in conjunction with New Contemporaries.


 
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Mr Freeze

Mr Freeze

 

Conor Rogers

Conor Rogers is an artist based in Sheffield and a graduate of Sheffield Hallam University (2014). He was shortlisted for the John Moores painting prize (2014). The following year he exhibited as a part of the Bloomberg New Contemporaries (2015) at Primary gallery, Nottingham & ICA, London. Conor has exhibited work nationally and internationally, selected shows include Manchester and New York with Paper Gallery (2014), Scottish Queen Gallery, Sheffield (2015). In 2016, 

He took part in UKYA national festival in Derby, and was chosen to represent the UK at the ‘Mediterranea 18 Young Artists Biennale’ held in Albania (2017).  Later that year, he was Shortlisted for the ‘John Ruskin Prize' 2017 and exhibited as part of a group show for the British Council and UKYA in Seoul’s National Assembly, South Korea. In 2018, was showcased in ‘Malevolent Eldritch Shrieking’ curated by Paul Morrison at Attercliffe TM Sheffield. Most recently he was shortlisted for the ‘Agent of Change’ John Ruskin Prize 2019 exhibition in Manchester. 


 
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The night face up

The night face up

 

Francisco Rodriguez

Francisco Rodriguez was born in Santiago (Chile) in 1989. He completed his BA in Fine Art with a post-diploma in Painting in the Universidad de Chile in 2013. In 2014 he moves to London to continue with his postgraduates studies. In 2015 he received a scholarship from the Chilean government to study an MFA in painting at the Slade School of Fine Art (UCL) graduating in 2018. His work has been shown in several solo and group exhibitions in Europe and America both in galleries and museums. He also was part of Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2018. Francisco lives and works in London.


 
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Surrender

Surrender

 

Linnet Rubaya

A child of a nurse and a policeman in post-colonial Zimbabwe, Linnet is a self-taught artist born in Harare Zimbabwe and raised in London, England. She now lives and works in Leeds, England after graduating with a degree in Biomedical Science from The University of Brighton. As a child of the African Diaspora, her search for home has led her to have many connections to many cities and many stories. With contemporary influences from artists such as Nelson Makamo, Banksy and most notably Kerry James Marshall, Linnet aims is to provide a unique commentary primarily for under represented people.


 
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Unified

Unified

 

Malgorzata Lisiecka

Malgorzata Lisiecka is a visual artist based in London. She explores the social, political and psychological context of fashion and clothes, creating objects and installations that balance on an edge of uncanny, absurd and unreal. Recently graduated from MA Contemporary Art Practice: Public Sphere at Royal College of Art and the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw from the Faculty of Sculpture. 


 
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Portrait of Dan

Portrait of Dan

 

Manon Ouimet

Manon Ouimet is a London-based photographer. In 2019 she received a distinction for an MA in Photography at the University of the West of England, Bristol. Manon engages with notions of identity and the therapeutic values photography can offer, posing difficult yet essential questions regarding body image and visual representation. Her work advocates understanding and compassion while inspiring self-confidence and positivity with the individuals with whom she collaborates. Manon’s work is born from desiring to learn human stories and to celebrate each individual that she photographs.


 
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Domestic Bodies

Domestic Bodies

 

Morgan Dowdall

Morgan Dowdall is an artist born in South Wales and based in Cardiff. As a recent graduate of BA (hons) Ceramics at Cardiff School of Art & Design he predominantly works with clay, however Morgan’s artistic practice explores all facets of visual art, ranging from: sculpture, applied arts, surface design to installation. Through these, he explores queer aesthetics and the representation of the male body throughout art history. His work is often playful but is nevertheless serious in its attempt to subvert the traditions that come with portraying the naked male figure.


 
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Ornamental Crime

Ornamental Crime

 

Rob Branigan

Rob Branigan (b. Liverpool 1992) graduated from The Ruskin School of Art, 2013, and the Royal College of Art 2019. He has recently shown at Assembly Point and Filet Space, London, completed a residency at Studio Block M74, Mexico City, and has an upcoming collaborative residency with Finbar Ward at Standpoint, London. Rob's practice typically utilises the motif of the vessel, the support structure, within his work as a means of providing a receptacle for the viewer, engaging them to discuss ideas surrounding the objects he references - exploring passages of time, inclinations of memory, ideas of knowledge or power structures.


 
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Pulutan 1

Pulutan 1

 

William Harman

Humour is at the heart of Harman’s practice. His paintings are fun. Drawing from his experience and cultural heritage, he creates purposely kitsch scenes that are recognisable and accessible. Using gatherings such as birthday parties, family events, nights out and the regulars at the local as a starting point, Harman fills his canvases with stiff and awkward characters, in his twisted visual diary, composed with a painterly crudeness for the viewer to confront and enjoy, as he navigates the course between realism and the surreal.


Laura Evans