On the 22nd June 2011, I had the privilege to attend the BP Portrait Award 2011, Private Exhibition and personally meet Wim Heldens, the winner of “the most prestigious portrait competition in the world, promoting the very best in contemporary painting”
The BP Portrait is held at the National Portrait Gallery in London and has been sponsored for the past 22 years by BP. The competition gives many talented and undiscovered artists the opportunity to participate and exhibit their artwork in one of the most respected and influential galleries in the world; just being part of the award is synonymous of quality and success; winning the admiration and respect of important figures and art collectors in the art-world is the best prize, however, the winning prize of £25,000 is not bad either.
The 2011 Winners
The brutal and harsh realism of the portrait as well as the confidence of Cumberland’s subject (one of Cumberland’s friends) made an interesting and honest portrait.
BP Portrait Award Shortlist 2011
Only 55 pieces were selected from the 2,300 entrants that submitted their work to the competition this year. Among the most prominent artists are Cayetano de Arquer Buigas with “Ohh!”, Wendy Elia with “I could have been a contender” and Jan Mikulka with a very realistic portrait called Jakub.
Visit the National Portrait Gallery
You can visit the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in St Martin’s Place or simply enjoy a cultural day out at the Gallery; it houses the world’s largest collection of portraits. The exhibition is free.
Learning How to Draw
Drawing is a simple form of art; however, mastering drawing is the challenge for many of us; it requires time, patience and practice; using the best tools will ensure you learn to sketch and develop your techniques from the basis; and selecting the best pencil drawing technique is fundamental to improve your work of art.