Friday, February 12, 2016

Review: The Columbia Threadneedle Prize 2016

The artwork selected for the Columbia Threadneedle Prize exhibition at the Mall Galleries is different from previous years - and I like it a lot better.

Threadneedle Prize Exhibition: A view of the Main Galleryprior to the Preview
Compared to previous years, the changes I noticed are that
  • the art - to my mind - is a lot more accessible. This is an exhibition which will be enjoyed by more people.
  • there's a huge diversity in interpretation of figurative and representational art. I'm guessing a lot of artists may well find it stimulates their own work. 
  • more drawings and paintings of figures and people
Some very strong paintings of figures - both large....
...and small
  • a lot of very good drawings and display of draughtsmanship
  • more monochromatic artwork - with a great hang in the North Gallery
Some impressive monochromatic and near mono drawings and paintings in the Far North Gallery
  • more works on paper 
  • media is much more mixed
  • a lot less sculpture
only one piece of sculpture that I spotted
  • a much better fit with most people's understanding of figurative artwork
First Prize on the left; shortlisted on the right
This is also an exhibition which deserves to be seen by many of people who exhibit and who seek to exhibit artwork at the open exhibitions of the FBS Societies (and others) at the Mall Galleries because it stretches the boundaries of figurative while remaining accessible to all.

North Gallery - First room
North Gallery - second room
To my mind it sets a very good benchmark for contemporary figurative art.

It's also complemented by an extremely good exhibition in the Threadneedle Space.

I'm certainly thinking about going back for another look - and I've already seen it twice!

I'll be posting more pics from the exhibitions of artists with their paintings and purchasers with their new paintings on my Facebook Page over the next week.

More about the Threadneedle Prize 2016

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