Little time remains for artists to enter the second Sanlam Portrait Award with the closing date for entries set for 23 July 2015. Launched in 2013, the award celebrates and showcases the best of original portraiture in South Africa. Sponsored by Sanlam Private Wealth, in partnership with Durbanville’s Rust-en-Vrede Art Gallery, it offers a substantial prize of R100 000.
Why should you enter?
In addition to the monetary prize, a popular incentive for entrants is the fact that Sanlam Private Wealth will sponsor the entry of the winning artist’s portrait into the BP Portrait Award 2016 (should it comply with the BP Portrait Award criteria), an annual portraiture competition held at the National Portrait Gallery in London, England. Stefan Hundt, head of the art advisory service of Sanlam Private Wealth, describes the BP Portrait Award as “reputedly one of the most prestigious international art competitions for portraiture”.
The winning artist will also have the opportunity of a solo exhibition at Durbanville’s Rust-en-Vrede Gallery in July 2017. His or her entry will be featured in the 2015 Sanlam Portrait Award catalogue, will grace the cover of the 2017 catalogue and, under the auspices of the Sanlam Art Collection, will go on tour as part of the selected top 40 portraits to various museums and galleries throughout South Africa after the exhibition at the Rust-en-Vrede Gallery.
“Sanlam Private Wealth recognises that art is an important part of South Africa’s diverse culture and identity. The Sanlam Portrait Award provides the opportunity for established and aspiring artists to give expression to that identity and have it showcased country wide for all South Africans to appreciate and enjoy,” says Hundt.
It is in this spirit that the independently adjudicated top 40 artworks will be exhibited at Rust-en-Vrede Gallery in Durbanville and join the nationwide tour. At the same time, an additional 60 works will be exhibited at the Irma Stern Museum and the Casa Labia in Cape Town. This means the top 100 portraits, as selected by the judges, will be exhibited to a wide audience in South Africa, and members of the public will have the opportunity to purchase the works on display.
Ease of Entry
“To encourage more entries this year, we have adapted the entry requirements slightly,” says Hundt. The 2015 competition is open to artists 18 years and older who are residents of South Africa (the 2013 age requirement was 21 years). Entries are restricted to two dimensional works and the delivery of these works will be facilitated by the Rust-en-Vrede Art Gallery in Durbanville, which has contracted Stuttaford Van Lines as the official courier service for the Sanlam Portrait Award. Entrants may drop off their unwrapped portraits at any of the nationwide depots as listed on the entry form. Stuttaford Van Lines will wrap the work and arrange for it to be couriered to the Gallery free of charge.
All works entered will be judged anonymously by a panel of three independent judges convened by Stefan Hundt consisting of Tanya Poole award winning artist and lecturer at Rhodes Unversity, Craig Wylie, BP Portrait Award (UK) winner in 2008, from the United Kingdom and Ernestine White curator for Contemporary Art at the Iziko South African National Gallery in Cape Town.
The first Sanlam Portrait Award, held in 2013, attracted a staggering 1 783 entries. KwaZulu-Natal artist Heather Gourlay-Conyngham walked off with the top prize for her nude male portrait entitled A Young Man (177 x 80cm, oil on canvas). “The calibre of entries received in the inaugural competition was excellent, and we look forward to reviewing the portraits of the 2015 entrants,” says Hundt.
The winner will be announced at a gala event to be held at the Rust-en-Vrede Art Gallery in Durbanville on 27 August 2015.
Visit www.sanlamportraitaward.co.za or www.rust-en-vrede.com.