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National Sculpture Prize

10 artists shortlisted from a nationwide open call

2021 Winner

Gus Skottowe

Rituals of the Technium is a digital stained glass window that exists between a screen, a portal, a window, a shrine.

On a fundamental level the handcrafted lead and glass facade takes the form of a scaled up RGB (Red, Green, Blue) pixel array; the inherent structure found in every digital screen across our technological ecology. This pixel structure accumulates to form a pixelated circular window in ode of the rose window; the stained glass centerpiece commonly found in gothic cathedrals.

However, as opposed to offering the narratives and icons of spiritual faith, It instead streams the trending image searches occurring live on the internet. Whereby these images are then manipulated through a series of kaleidoscopic filters formulated from the various structural styles of stone tracery found in rose windows.

The piece invites you to bask in the light of an evolving portrait of our collective digital consciousness. It hopes to help contemplate how a lower visual resolution can maybe offer a higher perceptual resolution upon our new age digital existences.

The winner of the "People's Choice Award" is

Lucy Gregory

Rose Tinted is a spinning, wind-activated, kinetic sculpture composed of 16 rose-coloured lenses. It’s an abstracted, exploded disco ball, powered by the natural rhythms of nature and the environment of the Broomhill Estate – the sun casting kaleidoscopic, rosy spotlit circles onto the surroundings on a bright day.

Rose Tinted, 2021
Kinetic sculpture, Wind activated,
Stainless steel, aluminum, perspex, Stainless fixings

About the National Sculpture Prize

The National Sculpture Prize (NSP) bolsters the arts ecosystem, supporting and elevating artists by providing a platform to realize speculative artworks in outdoor mediums and scales. In a change to previous years, the competition is open to all aspiring sculptors and no longer requires applicants to have attended an art school with the funding increased from £1,000 towards the fabrication of artworks to £2,500 for 10 successful applications.

The theme of the exhibition is Out-thinking the Future; to encourage the artist to create works that push and break down boundaries of their art practice, towards a solution, observation, or prediction of what is to come, how we adapt to current and future inevitabilities or speculations?

Interpretations, innovations, and inventions can all fall into this theme. The human condition, artistic expression, contemporary mediums, technological advances, prophecy, cultural movements, innovations of design, and creativity are all acceptable narratives.

This newfound theme for 2021’s competition resulted in 10 exceptional artists and artworks all interpreting the exhibition’s collective goal. With many questions still to answer in our world, the exhibition will continue to prompt the creatives to add to humankind’s collaborative effort in asking and solving them. Advocating art as a tool within society’s arsenal, that can be used to evolve our imagination.

Two further commendations will be awarded to artists, chosen from an initial shortlist of ten. The first, decided by a panel of distinguished experts, will be awarded a £10,000 cash prize plus a £5,000 investment in an additional sculpture to be exhibited at Broomhill. A further “People’s Choice” winner is decided by exhibition attendees, the ‘People’s Choice’ winner receives a £5,000 cash prize with the artwork remaining as part of the collection.

serpentine stone sculpture, gilded text carved into 2 faces of a cut boulder

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