The Self Portrait Prize and establishment of the Next Generation Collection
Since being established in 2011 the Self Portrait Prize has been held every two years. Previous winners of the £10,000 award include Celia Paul (2011), Thomas Newbolt (2013), Shanti Panchal (2015), Benjamin Ogbebor (2017) and David Dawson (2019) and the event is now a critically acclaimed award. Every year a prestigious panel of judges including figures such as Sean Rainbird (Director of the National Gallery of Ireland), Professor Deborah Swallow (Director of the Courtauld Institute of Art), Air Chief Marshall Sir Stephen Hillier (Head of the RAF), Martin Gayford (art critic and writer), Bill Feaver (art critic and writer), Sister Wendy Beckett (art historian) and Jackie Wullschlager (art critic) amongst others, have chosen a winner to be awarded the £10,000 Ruth Borchard Award and multiple works have been acquired for the Collection. Established from works submitted to the prize the Next Generation Collection is a unique, ever expanding body of British and Irish art.
Self Portrait Prize, 2019
David Dawson's Looking at Self Reflection (2019) was selected as the winner of the 2019 Self Portrait Prize by a prestigious panel of judges including judges including Sean Rainbird (Director of the National Gallery of Ireland), Professor Deborah Swallow (Director of the Courtauld Institute of Art), Air Chief Marshall Sir Stephen Hillier (Head of the RAF), Martin Gayford (art critic and writer), Marc Steene (Director of Outside In) and 2017 prize winner, Benjamin Ogbebor.
Looking at Self Reflection (2019) sees Dawson’s interest in the figurative move from the camera to the canvas. Dawson’s swift and powerful brush strokes render a strident depiction of the artist at work. Dawson appears to stare beyond the frame at his viewer, engaging his audience in the action of self-depiction. The 2019 Prize also saw the acquisition of works by Rowan Bazley, Eileen Cooper RA, Fiona Si Hui, Paulina Kloc, Kirsty Latoya, Hannah Murray, Michael Rees, Graham Rees, Toby Rainbird, Jamie Routley, Claire Mont Smith and Geraldine Swayne.
Self Portrait Prize, 2017
In 2017, Ogbebor, an “unknown” British Nigerian won the Ruth Borchard Self-Portrait Prize, with his painting Self Portrait II, (2017). Selected by judges Dr Xavier Bray (Director, The Wallace Collection), Charlotte Mullins (art critic and author), Alastair Sooke, (broadcaster and art critic at The Daily Telegraph), Marilyn Scott (Director, The Lighbox), Shanti Panchal (2015 Winner), and Richard Borchard (son of Ruth Ruth Borchard), Ogbebor’s work was praised for its technical brilliance and powerful rendering of the inner self.
The work demonstrates the powerful possibility of self-portraiture as a platform for individual expression and cultural heritage. Living in Hackney and trained in both London and Nigeria Ogbebor context represents a longstanding connection between Britain and the Commonwealth States.
From this exhibition an unrivalled number of works were purchased for the Ruth Borchard Next Generation Collection, including works by Tracey Emin, Michael Ajerman, Susan Engledow, Oli Epp, Alicia France, Rebecca Harper, Kimberly Klauss, Jennifer McRae, Jim McLean, Howard Morgan, Ishbel Myerscough, Gideon Rubin, Tai-Shan Schierenberg and Helen Wilson.
Self Portrait Prize 2015
In 2015, a prestigious panel of judges including Thomas Newbolt (Winner of the prize in 2011), Charles Suamarez Smith (Secretary and Chief Executive of Royal Academy of Arts), Simon Martin (Artistic Director of Pallant House Gallery), Jackie Wullschlager (Chief Art Critic for the Financial Times) and Dr Robert Travers (Director of Piano Nobile) selected the work of Shanti Panchal as the winner of the third biennial self-portrait prize.
Influenced by the loss of his studio Panchal expresses the basic human need for shelter. He wrote how he, “was being stripped naked of the things I had worked for over many years”. Wearing nothing but a Hindu prayer bead round his neck he highlights the importance of heritage at times of uncertainty. Through his work he documents his own experiences and position within the complex continuum of time and space.
The Collection then went on to make a record number of acquisitions and an additional 17 works all of which are now held in the Next Generation Collection.
Self Portrait Prize, 2013
Artist Thomas Newbolt won the second biennial Ruth Borchard Self Portrait Prize. His work was chosen by individuals including Mark Hudson and Huon Mallalieu. Painting from memory, in relative darkness, in a large weather-boarded barn studio in the Cambridgeshire Fens, Newbolt demonstrates how self-portraiture offers an opportunity for the artist to present their image as they know themselves. A platform for the individual to explore the potent, confusing, relationship between psyche and body. On receiving his award, Newbolt commented, “Making a self-portrait is one of the hardest things a painter can do: you find that despite expectation you are working from memory but a memory that is looking back at you.”
Alongside Newbolt, an additional five works were acquired for the Collection. These included those of well renowned portrait artists Adam Birtwistle, Frances Borden and Dale Atkinson as well as that of 16 year old Atalanta Arden Miller.
Self Portrait Prize, 2011
In 2011 the Ruth Borchard Self Portrait Prize was launched and judges, including William Feaver, Bill Packer and Sister Wendy Beckett selected the Celia Paul to become the first winner of the Ruth Borchard Self-Portrait Prize.
Commenting on her work Paul wrote “Women are so often defined by labels: wife, daughter, sister, mistress, Muse. When looking in a mirror women are questioning who they are and what place they have in the world”. It demonstrates the powerful capacity of self-portraiture as a platform for self-expression.
In addition to Paul being awarded the £10,000 Ruth Borchard Prize the Next Generation was established through the acquisition of works by Maggi Hambling, Susan Light, Greg Tricker, David Caldwell, Fred Crayk, Laura Gressani, Brita Granstrom, Mary Mabbutt, Cherry Pickles and Lindsay Simons.
Read more on the artists & Self Portraits of the Next Generation Collection
Representing the Next Generation