Challenge goes out to Devon's 'Third Age' artists

This is The West Country: Challenge goes out to Devon's 'Third Age' artists Challenge goes out to Devon's 'Third Age' artists

MATURE artists in Devon are being challenged to show their artistic skills with the chance to win a £5,000 prize in this year’s Oldie British Artist Award (OBA).

Sponsored by specialist fine art and heritage insurer Ecclesiastical and run in conjunction with The Oldie magazine, the OBA is open exclusively to UK artists over the age of 60 and is designed to celebrate figurative art.

This is the third year that the competition has been run and over its past two years, it has attracted more than 600 drawings and paintings.

At 93, the competition’s first winner, Donald Zec, proved that age is no barrier to artistic talent and, like many of the competition’s entrants, he had only taken up painting in recent years.

Clare Pardy, Fine Art & Heritage Development Director at Ecclesiastical Insurance, which provides the £5,000 prize, said: “Today’s art world has plenty of awards for young artists – and an almost complete absence of similar prizes for those who have either been painting all their lives or discovered a skill in later years.

"The OBA challenges the more mature artist, who may only ever have painted for their own enjoyment, to ‘go public’ with their work with the opportunity to win a substantial prize.

"What is particularly impressive about the competition is the sheer quality of the entries we receive and it is very rewarding to be involved in an award which offers a platform for mature artistic talent.”

The 2014 Awards are now open for entries, with a closing deadline of 10 July.

A shortlist of ten works of art will be announced on 24 July and the shortlisted artists will then be asked to provide a portfolio of their work (which will form part of the final judging process) by 8 August.

The ten shortlisted works of art will be exhibited at the Abbott and Holder Gallery in Museum Street prior to the award ceremony.

The winner will be announced and presented with the Oldie British Artist Award at a ceremony on 10 September at Petyt Hall, London.

Entries should be on paper or canvas (no larger than 36" x 30") and using any materials (oil, watercolour or acrylics).

Strictly no formaldehyde and no prints - works must have been executed since January 1 2013.

For more information on the award and how to enter, visit www.ecclesiastical.com/oba.

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