Benjamin Sullivan, “Breech!,” 2017

It’s perhaps the most competitive and prestigious portraiture contest in the world, hosted annually by the National Portrait Gallery in London. We’ve got a shortlist of honorees at 2017’s BP Portrait Awards.

More than 2,500 works of portraiture by artists from 87 countries around the world were submitted for consideration in 2017’s BP Portrait Awards in London. Although the exhibition of winners does not officially open until June 22 (running through September 24), organizers have revealed who’s under consideration for the grand prize.

Antony Williams, “Emma,” 2016

Three works have been isolated as potential winners: “Double Portrait” by French illustrator Thomas Ehretsmann; “Breech!” by Benjamin Sullivan; and “Emma” by Antony Williams. The grand prize winner will receive £30,000, plus, at the judges’ discretion, a commission worth £5,000, to be agreed between the National Portrait Gallery and the artist.

Second prize is worth £10,000, third place £8,000, and the BP Young Artist Award is valued at £7,000. Finally, a BP Travel Award worth £6,000 will also be handed out.

Thomas Ehretsmann, “Double Portrait,” 2016, acrylic on board, 30 x 40 cm.

This year’s BP Portrait Awards were judged from the original paintings by a panel that included Nicholas Cullinan, director, National Portrait Gallery (chair); Sarah Howgate, contemporary curator, National Portrait Gallery; Michael Landy, artist; Kirsty Wark, broadcaster and journalist; Camilla Hampshire, museums manager and cultural lead, Royal Albert Memorial Museum; and Exeter Des Violaris, director, UK Arts & Culture, BP.

To learn more, visit the BP Portrait Awards.

This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster
Andrew Webster is the Editor of Fine Art Today and works as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.

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