Art on Television

This post lists the UK television programmes I've covered and, in particular, those that involved artists who have participated in a competition related to art.

This page includes all the series I've reviewed of programmes by both Sky Arts and the BBC - which are listed below. Plus every blog post I've written about art on television programmes is also listed on this page.

The 'art on television' programmes are:

Sky Arts

  • Portrait Artist of the Year | Sky Arts
  • Landscape Artist of the Year | Sky Arts
Participants in Portrait Artist of the Decade in 2023

BBC

  • The Big Painting Challenge | BBC
  • The Arts and Craft House | BBC
  • Home is Where the Art is (Series 1 and 2) | BBC

Channel 4

  • Grayson's Art Club | Channel 4
  • The Great Pottery Throw Down (introduction posts)
  • Drawers Off!

Channel 5

  • Watercolour Challenge
  • Great Paintings of the World

Reviews

I started writing detailed reviews of programmes involving groups of artists after finding I got irritated by some of the comments about the episodes I read on Twitter afterwards.

So I decided to start highlighting some of the themes that I found arose in episodes and why some people do better than others "who wuz robbed". 

It was a really educational process as I found I only "got" the themes properly after watching each episode three times!  Rather like videos about painting, these are all programmes which keep on giving after the first time you watch them!

Sky Arts in 2025

Landscape Artist of the Year 2024 (Series 10)

Based on Series 10 of PAOTY, I think we can expect a celebration of the 10th anniversary.
The deadline for entries for Series 10 is Friday 3rd May 2024


Sky Arts in 2024


These Sky Arts commissioned programmes - made by Storyvault Films - are available on Sky Arts - the only dedicated arts channel on UK television - and you can view via:
  • Sky TV - for all Sky subscribers
  • Now TV - for those with a subscription to the app 
  • Sky Arts on Freeview Channel 36 (but note there's no catch up service)
All past series of the Sky Arts "Artist of the Year" programmes can also be accessed on Sky and via the Now TV app 
Links to all my REVIEWS of broadcast episodes will be embedded in the lists below as they are published.

Portrait Artist of the Year 2024 (Series 11)

This will be broadcast (usually on a Wednesday evening) in the Autumn of 2024, probably starting in October.
  • Call for Entries: Series 11 of Portrait Artist of the Year
  • Review: Episode 1 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024 
  • Review: Episode 2 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • Review: Episode 3 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • Review: Episode 4 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • Review: Episode 5 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • Review: Episode 6 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • Review: Episode 7 of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • Review: Semi Finals of Portrait Artist of the Year 2024
  • The Final

Landscape Artist of the Year 2024 (Series 9)

This series was filmed in Summer 2023 and is being broadcast in early 2024.

Sky Arts in 2023


Portrait Artist of the Decade + Portrait Artist of the Year (Series 10) - filmed April / broadcast Autumn 2023

The semi finals of Series 1

Landscape Artist of the Year (Series 8) - filmed Summer 2022 / broadcast early 2023


Sky Arts in 2022


Portrait Artist of the Year (Series 9) - broadcast Autumn 2022



All the reviews includes themes for reference by future participants working to a 4 hour time frame - in terms of challenges and learning points.

Landscape Artist of the Year (series 7) - filmed in 2021 / broadcast early 2022

All the reviews includes themes for reference by future participants - or plein air painters working to a time frame - in terms of problems experienced and challenges overcome.
This post is about the Call for Entries for those wanting to submit an application to paint in the heats to be held this summer.
This post is about the top ten landscape paintings of National Trust properties created during the filming of Landscape Artist of the Year

Sky Arts in 2021

Landscape Artist of the Year (series 6) -  filmed in 2020 / broadcast early 2021



All the reviews includes themes for reference by future participants - or plein air painters working to a time frame - in terms of problems experienced and challenges overcome.

Sky Arts in 2020


Landscape Artist of the Year 2020

Eventually this series was not broadcast until early 2021 - see above.

Portrait Artist of the Year 2020


The programme started broadcasting in January 2020.

Learning Points re the 2020 competition (Autumn 2020)

Website: https://www.skyartsartistoftheyear.tv/portrait/


Battersea Arts Centre


Sky Arts in 2019


Landscape Artist of the Year 2019




An Instagram mashup of #landscapeartistoftheyear in 2019

If you go to Kate Brian's Instagram account you can find out whether she made it to the final - and what happened next!

Portrait Artist of the Year 2019


Overhead view of the rig at the Wallace Collection


the semi-finalists


Sky Arts in 2018



Portrait Artist of the Year 2018

In memory of Michele Opoku Taylor (1975-2017) and Episode 2
Her self-portrait showed her after her mastectomy holding her breast in her hand
- a very powerful painting - and a good likeness.
She died on 24 December 2017 and the heat she was in aired after her death.
My Flickr Album of the photos I took when I watched Heat 8
Filmed at the Wallace Collection on 10 April 2017. Aired on Sky Arts on 6 March 2018

Landscape Artist of the Year 2018

These are LENGTHY blog posts commenting on all sorts of aspects related to painting landscapes and participating in a competition which allows you 4 hours minus lots of interruptions and changes in the weather to paint a decent landscape.
The Wild Card entrants at a very wet and misty Loch Fyne
Pods and port - Felixstowe Docks was the location for the Semi-Final
and only one artist had the good sense to check the planned arrivals of ships! ;)
and she won!
I highly recommend that those who have viewed the FINAL of Sky Arts Landscape Artist of the Year 2018 watch it again and LISTEN.

The BBC - programmes involving artists and artisans


BBC: Celebrity Painting Challenge


BBC: The Big Painting Challenge 2018


The Big Painting Challenge Participants in 2018

BBC: The Big Painting Challenge 2017 (Series 2)

Painting in Hastings during four seasons in one day!

BBC: The Big Painting Challenge 2015 (Series 1)

Landscape painting in the first episode

BBC: The Arts and Crafts House (2018)


This is the one which I'd characterise as a "win" for my stand on credits for artists.
I'm very pleased to tell you that the artisans wrote to the producers of the programme about the lack of name credit - quoting my blog post - and by the second episode, they'd got their name credit at the end of the programme! By the end of the series they all had mini videos!

The artistans

BBC: Home is Where the Art is (Series 2)


BBC: Home is Where the Art is (Series 1)



CHANNEL 4

Channel 4 is a public service commercial broadcaster that commissions original programming and online content from independent production companies. Interestingly Channel 4 does NOT have a category for Arts - despite its stated purpose - and despite having a commissioning brief for the Arts.

Past posts include

Grayson's Art Club

Plus


The Great Pottery Throw Down