Announcing the Rise Art Prize Winners

Posted by Aimee Morris on 09th February 2018

The Rise Art Prize exhibition has kicked off with a bang (and many a Patron Tequila cocktail). Artists and judges came from all corners of the world to celebrate at our launch party and awards ceremony at House of Vans in London. 


Members of our final panel admiring Heja Rahiminia's Looking for Utopia: Refugees series.


Our global judging panel, featuring 9 acclaimed artists - including Gavin Turk, Fiona Banner and Richard Wilson - and renowned curators and arts journalists, viewed the works in person on the night. After much deliberation, the judges cast their votes... and we're proud to announce the following winning artists.


Lebohang Kganye, South Africa

Global artist of the year

Presented by YBA Gavin Turk.


Ke ile ka tswela pele ka ho tereka a ntse a bua by Lebohang Kganye


Beatrice Hodgkin, Deputy Editor of the FT How to Spend It Magazine, describes Lebohang's work as "poetic manipulation". "Her work," says Beatrice, "presents a clever dialogue on how we adapt nostalgic memory and truth."


Gina Soden, UK

Patrón Tequila UK Artist of the Year

Presented by YBA Gavin Turk.


Selected by famed photographer David Bailey and presented by Head of Exhibitions at Turner Contemporary Sarah Martin.


YBA Gavin Turk with double winner Gina Soden.



Tom Waugh, UK

People's Choice Award

Presented by Serge DeNimes Founder Oliver Proudlock.

Sculpture Award

Chosen and presented by two-time Turner Prize nominee Richard Wilson (RA).


Tom Waugh with his sculpture series on exhibition.


Tom's sculpture series reminded YBA Gavin Turk of his own work - high praise indeed.


Kristjana Williams, UK

Illustration Award

Chosen and presented by Hunger Magazine Editor Holly Fraser.

Austur Robin London 2016 by Kristjana Williams


Claire Meadows of After Nyne magazine comments: "Kristjana’s work is everything I look for in contemporary illustration. Aside from being technically brilliant, her use of colour for impact as second to none. I will be keeping a very close eye on her progress from here."


Nelson Makamo, South Africa

Drawing Award

Chosen and presented by Deputy Editor of FT How to Spend It Magazine Beatrice Hodgkin.


Beauty by Nelson Makamo


For regional judge Nina Mahdavi finds Nelson's drawings "both moving and flawless". She continues, "I personally love drawings and find that it’s important to keep this craft alive. It brings an authenticity to the work that is often overlooked in the sea of contemporary art". 


Naomi Edmondson, UK

Street Art Award

Chosen and presented by renowned urban artist Ben Eine.


I Am the Size of What I See by Naomi Edmondson



Natasha Kumar, UK

Print Award

Chosen by acclaimed artist Harland Miller and presented by curator/writer FatoÅŸ Üstek.


Indian Woman #Red Diya by Natasha Kumar



Emily Moore, UK

Painting Award

Chosen and presented by esteemed contemporary painter Antony Micallef.


Emily Moore with her piece, Dreams of Rooftop Pools at Sonar.


For acclaimed contemporary painter, Antony Micallef, Emily's artwork is a "visually already complete piece. It knows what it is".


UK Young Artists of the Year







Under 12 runner up Amy Smith and her family.



A big thank you goes out to all the finalists and judges who helped along the way. Also, a special thank you to Flight Logistics/ShipArt for their support of the event as the Official Shipping Partner of the Rise Art Prize.


Some snaps from the launch party and awards ceremony...


Lily Allen enjoying the party.


Gavin Turk contemplating an artwork.


From left: Ben Eine, Lauren Baker, Rebecca Mason and Elizabeth Waggett in front of one of Lauren's neon installations.


Hanging out in Tunnel 2.


9 Acclaimed Artists on the Rise Art Prize Global Panel

Posted in Inside Scoop by Aimee Morris on 05th February 2018

It’s nearly time for the Rise Art Prize awards ceremony and exhibition launch party. The big night is set to begin with our global judging panel reviewing the artworks by our 25 finalists, and choosing a Global Artist of the Year and UK Artist of the Year. And who better to have on the panel than a group of 9 artists who’ve made it to the top themselves? We present to you, in no particular order, our Rise Art Prize artist judges…



Gavin is a YBA artist who has pioneered many forms of contemporary British sculpture now taken for granted - including the painted bronze, the waxwork, the recycled art-historical icon and the use of rubbish in art.


Yes by Gavin Turk


Browse Gavin’s Work >>



Fiona’s work centres on the problems and possibilities of language. The Turner Prize nominee creates pieces that encompass text, sculpture, drawing, film and installation. Fiona became known for her early written transcriptions of Hollywood war films such as Top Gun and Apocalypse Now.




Harland is an iconic British artist and writer best known for his large-scale canvases of Penguin Book covers. The Chelsea College of Art graduate combines the classic visuals of Penguin Books with his own satirical titles. Looking for an artist who’s hot right now? Harland is your man.




David is a pioneer of contemporary photography. The British photographer is credited with photographing some of the most compelling images of the last 50 years. He’s captured iconic images of legends like The Rolling Stones, Damien Hirst and Kate Moss.


Mick Jagger by David Bailey, 1964. Photograph: David Bailey



Hush’s unique East-meets-West infused style combines elements of Street Art, Figurative and Fine Art. The British-born urban artist is internationally recognised and holds sellout shows in the US, UK and Australia. Hush has collaborated with other artists like Dan Baldwin, as well as luxury brands like watchmaker Hublot.



Browse Hush’s Work >>



Antony is a British artist who’s recognised as one of the finest painters in contemporary art today. He was tutored by the great landscape painter John Virtue, who was taught by renowned post war painter Frank Auerbach. In 2000, Antony won second prize for the BP Portrait Award.




Bruce is a leading figure in the British contemporary art scene. The Scottish artist is highly regarded and his sculptures, paintings and performance art have influenced artists at home and abroad.


Grey Grow Green by Bruce McLean 


Browse Bruce’s Work >>



Richard is one of Britain’s most renowned sculptors. He has been nominated twice for the Turner Prize and has represented Britain in the Sydney, Sao Paulo, Venice and Aperto Biennials, plus the Yokohama and Aichi Triennials. He was elected a member of the Royal Academy in 2006.




Ben is a street artist based in the UK whose distinctive typography-style murals can be found dotted throughout London and in numerous European capitals. His work is so acclaimed that David Cameron gifted Barack Obama one of his paintings back in 2010.


Revolution Black Gloss by Ben Eine


Browse Ben’s Work >>


Painting Perception with Japanese Artist Hiroshi Sato

Posted in In the Studio by Aimee Morris on 01st February 2018

It’s as if Hiroshi has taken elements of Cezanne, Hopper and Vermeer and personalised them to create intimate and quiet glimpses into the lives of his subjects.

These are the words of Art Toronto Director, Susannah Rosenstock, one of our esteemed regional judges for the Rise Art Prize. Not only are Hiroshi Sato's paintings technically excellent, but they are also fascinating in subject matter. The US-based Rise Art Prize finalist explores human consciousness and the ways in which mind and environment interact. Come behind the scenes of Hiroshi's studio and find out more about his motivations and influences. 



What is it about figures in interior environments that interests you?

My interest in making works that contain an implied narrative drives the setting of the picture. The figure in interior environments allows room to infuse a more concise context, and allows me to seamlessly arrange a cohesive relationship between various objects that are included to provide the narrative. It quite literally allows me to create a scene.


Brown Shoes 


Where do you draw inspiration from for your pieces?

My inspirations derive from human behavior and my interest in exploring the endless facets and questions of human perception. Due to my background, I have always observed the individual human mind as a complete world within the external world we all share and occupy.



I am interested in the contrast between the two worlds: the individual world is constructed from the external world, but for some reason, the internal world is completely different from the external world.


Who or what has influenced your painting style?

My defining influences in painting have been Chuck Close, Euan Uglow, Vermeer, Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth. Chuck Close was the artist who showed me how I want the eye to see illusionism. Euan Uglow defined how I would technically want to paint.



Vermeer showed me how to place information. Edward Hopper showed me how to leave out information. Andrew Wyeth showed me that it’s possible to convey the non verbal to an audience.


Road to the Night

Where is your studio and what is it like?

My studio is in Mission District in San Francisco. I am a loosely organized person in that I prefer to know where I have put tools, but I will not waste time organizing. I have a routine and so I already know what I will use and therefore ease of access is prioritized.



Browse MORE OF Hiroshi's Works >>



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