The Biscuit Factory

Young talent celebrated in North East’s largest art award

The largest art award in the North East returns this March to Ouseburn based art, craft and design gallery The Biscuit Factory, focusing on the work of young artists from across the UK.

Developed by the gallery, the Contemporary Young Artist Award is an annual competition and exhibition open to practitioners aged 35 and under working in various disciplines. This year Gallery Curators received over 1200 submissions, shortlisting 45 artists to display their work in a group show. Now in its fourth year, the Award takes centre stage as the headline exhibition in the gallery’s seasonal programme for the first time.

Aimed at emergent and early career artists the ambition of the exhibition is to provide visibility, experience and exposure for the shortlisted artists, with a platform from which to sell their work and to engage with over 15,000 gallery visitors who are expected to attend throughout the 3 month show.

The Biscuit Factory General Manager Rachel Brown comments: “in such a short period of time the Contemporary Young Artist Award has grown in reach, influence and standard, becoming a significant addition to the gallery and we humbly hope a significant opportunity for the participating artists”.

The exhibition, which features paintings, prints, textiles and sculpture, opens on Friday 6 March 6-9pm with a launch event where the winning artist will be unveiled, and gives a North East audience the first opportunity to see and buy works from the show.

A public vote accompanies the show, with The People’s Choice winner going on to receive a £500 cash prize. Gallery Curator Sam Knowles comments: “We encourage the public to get involved in this show by casting a vote for their favourite piece, which gives additional opportunity for the artists to get feedback on their work, and it’s always interesting to gauge the public’s reaction”

The culmination of the competition is of course the award itself – chosen by the Gallery’s Curators and given to one artist, the covetable accolade is awarded alongside a cash prize of £2000 and an invitation to host a solo show of their work.