Friday, June 30, 2017

Interview with Antony Williams (BP Portrait Award 2017 3rd Prize)

This post includes:
  • my video interview with Antony Williams
  • more about Antony Williams and a summary of his track record to date as a portrait painter
  • more about other people who have won third prize eg Benjamin Sullivan (who won 3rd Prize in 2015) and David Jon Kassan (who won third prize in 2014)
Antony won the BP Portrait Award Third Prize of £8,000 for his egg tempera painting of Emma Bruce who had been modelling for Williams almost continuously for eleven years in his studio in Chertsey

Antony Williams with his Third Prize and his prize-winning portrait
Egg tempera on board, (690 x560mm,
You'll see from my "More about Antony Williams' section below that Antony is a professional painter who is very experienced and well regarded. He has won a number of prizes and awards and his portraits are in a number of collections, notably the Royal Collection, the House of Commons and the National Portrait Gallery.

Below is my video of my interview with Antony. I asked him about
  • the impact of being in the BP Portrait Exhibition - he first exhibited age 26 and then got caught by the age 40 limit before this was lifted - and he started submitting and exhibiting again (you can see some of his other BP exhibits below)
  • his advice for people wanting to get into the BP Portrait Award exhibition and/or a BP Portrait Award
  • the benefits of being in the exhibition
  • the interest in his use of the egg tempera media 

Antony encourage other portrait painters to also use egg tempera and submit their paintings to the annual exhibitions of the BP Portrait Award!

His technique isn't obvious from digital images so I've done a crop of the portrait to illustrate how Antony works and why people are so interested in his use of egg tempera and how he applies it - using hatching strokes. Right click the image below and open in a new tab to see his technique even more clearly.

Crop of Emma - demonstrating Antony's egg tempera technique
copyright Antony Williams

More about Antony Williams RP PS NEAC

Key facts are
  • Age: 53 years (23.06.1964) 
  • Nationality: British
  • Occupation: established portrait artist, member of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters
  • Current home: UK
  • Art education: Farnham College and Portsmouth University
  • Media used: Egg tempera
  • Previous appearances in this award: 1995, 1998, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2014 and 2015
Figure lying by water by Antony Williams
egg tempera
Exhibited BP Portrait Award Exhibition 2015
  • Previous notable portraits for this award: 
  • Previous commissions for the National Portrait Gallery Collection: portrait of Amartya Sen (2003)
  • Previous notable awards and prizes:
    • Ondaatje Prize, 1995, 2012
    • Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize 2012, Winner
    • Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize 2007, Runner-Up Prize
    • Changing Faces Prize 2010
    • Prince of Wales’s Award for Portrait Drawing 2014
    • Arts Club Prize 2004, 2008
    • Discerning Eye Award for Still Life1998
    • Carroll Foundation Award 1991, 1995
Profile of Emma by Antony Williams
exhibited in BP Portrait Award 2014
copyright Antony Williams
  • Signature Member of:
    • Royal Society of Portrait Painters (elected 1996)
    • New English Art Club (elected 2007)
    • Pastel Society (elected 2007)
  • Work in Private Collections in England, Rep. of Ireland and USA; plus
    • The Royal Collection
    • House of Commons
    • National Portrait Gallery
    • Queen’s College Oxford
    • Garrick Club
    • MCC
  • Exhibitions: various solo exhibitions; Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition (1992, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2014); regularly exhibits with Royal Society of Portrait Painters (1995 – 2017)
  • Website:
  • Facebook Account:
  • Instagram

More about Third Prize Winners

Posts about the BP Portrait Award 2017

UPDATE - This is a compendium of all the posts for 2017

The Exhibition

The BP Portrait Award Exhibition will be on display at the following venues:
  • National Portrait Gallery, London all summer. It opens to the public on 22 June and continues until 24 September 2017 (Admission Free)
  • Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery Exeter (4 October – 3 December 2017); 
  • Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh (December 2017 – March 2018); 
  • Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens (March – June 2018.)
2017 marks the Portrait Award’s 38th year at the National Portrait Gallery and 28th year of sponsorship by BP.

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