The Aspect Prize is a showcase for contemporary painting in Scotland , open to all artists, established and emerging, Scottish, or living and working in Scotland .
The Prize was founded in 2003 in conjunction with Paisley Art Institute to raise the profile of artists who have not had a commercial solo exhibition in London for the last six years. There is no age limit. It is supported principally by Aspect Capital and is one of the largest prizes for painting in the UK with a total prize fund of £30,000. All of the works submitted through an open submission, were exhibited at the eighth annual Aspect Prize exhibition at the Paisley Art Institute in summer 2010, and from this, four painters were selected to exhibit their submission, along with additional works, in the finalist’s exhibition in London in early 2011, held at The Fleming Collection . The four finalists have received £5,000 with the eventual overall winner – to be announced at the London exhibition – receiving an additional £10,000. The Fleming Collection will select a work by the winning artist for their permanent collection. In January 2010 it was won by Patricia Cain, from Glasgow, who has since been awarded the Threadneedle Prize for her large-scale industrial drawing Building the Riverside Museum .
The 2010/11 Aspect Prize judging panel comprise artist Charles Jamieson, Chairman and prize co-founder, Michael Adam, prize co-founder, entrepreneur and art collector; Bill Smith, Trustee, The Fleming-Wyfold Art Foundation and Former Keeper of Art; Artist and last year’s winner of the Aspect Prize, Patricia Cain and Anthony Todd, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Aspect Capital. This year the four artists selected by the panel are Steven Lindsay, Adam Kennedy, and Frances Law and Rowena Comrie.
Paisley based Steven Lindsay left Glasgow School of Art when he was offered a record deal by Virgin and achieved major success as the lead singer of The Big Dish, who had a hit single with Miss America . He now works as a freelance graphic designer, art/creative director, artist and musician. He has a classic approach to painting, favouring broad brushwork, and most of his work is figurative.
Glasgow born and based artist Adam Kennedy graduated in Intermedia Art from Edinburgh College of Art in 2009 and his work ranges from site specific installations to paintings reflecting a childhood spent next to the River Clyde in Glasgow. Recent influences have been the contemporary artists Anne Penman Sweet and Ryan Mutter and his brother Paul was an Aspect Prize finalists in 2009-10.
Frances Law left Glasgow School of Art in 1980, draws her inspiration from natural forms and in particular from shells found on the beaches of Mull and Iona . The influence of the Hebrides has driven her to produce works with uncrowded space which are an invitation to meditation. Frances has supported her art through part-time work in higher and further education, community arts and health care. She won the Scottish National Art Prize in 2008 and lives in Kirriemuir, Angus.
The final of the four finalists, Glasgow based Rowena Comrie has worked as a professional artist for 25 years, supporting her painting through teaching and other freelance artwork. The latter has included an abstracted 20 foot map of Scotland painted on tarmac for the BBC. Rowena says that the paintings she has submitted for The Aspect Prize are examples of the large-scale oils that have always formed the bedrock of her work.
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