Thomas Ehretsmann, “Double Portrait,” 2016, acrylic on board, 30 x 40 cm. (finalist in 2017)

Any professional artist who makes portraits knows that no other international competition compares to the BP Portrait Awards. More than 2,500 works of portraiture by artists from 87 countries around the world were submitted for consideration in 2017, but that could certainly increase in 2018 after organizers announced this.

If gaining entry into one of the most coveted fine art competitions in the world wasn’t enough of an incentive, perhaps the recent announcement from organizers of the BP Portrait Awards will push many over the edge. In 2018, all prize values for the competition have been increased.

Antony Williams, “Emma,” 2016 (finalist in 2017)

As announced on November 28, the National Portrait Gallery, London, is excited to now be accepting entries for the 2018 competition, with the First Prize award increasing from £30,000 to £35,000 (about $47,000), second prize rising to £12,000 ($16,000) from £10,000; third prize to £10,000 ($13,300) from £8,000. The BP Young Artist Award, awarded to one selected artist aged between 18 and 30 rises to £9,000 ($12,000) from £7,000, and the BP Travel Award rises to £8,000 (about $10,700) from £6,000.

Artists can enter at between now and January 22. Full competition rules and guidance for digital submissions can be found online as well. The BP Portrait Award exhibition will run at the National Portrait Gallery from June 14 through September 23. In 2017, the exhibition is estimated to have been seen by nearly 250,000 people.

To learn more or apply, visit here.

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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