Jerwood Drawing Prize 2014

The Jerwood Drawing Prize toured to the University of Gloucestershire when I studied Fine Art there between 2007 and 2010. I remember invigilating the show in the bright gallery that we had on our Pittville campus, welcoming visitors and reading through the catalogue. 

I've kept the Jerwood Drawing Prize close to my heart ever since, each year I look forward to the announcement of who has been accepted and who has won each of the prizes. Last year I took the trip to London alone to see the exhibition, this year I took friends to see it in Cheltenham at The Wilson Art Gallery and Museum. 

I love how the exhibition sparks a debate about what drawing is. This year a few charcoal and oil pastel smudges on paper, hundreds of little pieces of thread stitched into paper and the sound of a womans voice feature. 

My eye was immediately drawn to Vertical Panorama: Oak Tree by Hannah Downing

 Vertical Panorama: Oak Tree by Hannah Downing 

Vertical Panorama: Oak Tree by Hannah Downing 

It's no secret that I love trees, landscapes and themes surrounding nature and countryside. The unusual perspective and the beautiful skill with which the artist has captured the texture in the tree bark grabbed me. 

 Detail of  Vertical Panorama: Oak Tree by Hannah Downing 

Detail of Vertical Panorama: Oak Tree by Hannah Downing 

Every piece in the show had something to offer, I was intrigued to hear the sound piece that won first prize this year. The sound of a woman describing an unknown object by artist Alison Carlier.  

 Exhibition view of the Jerwood Drawing Prize

Exhibition view of the Jerwood Drawing Prize

There Are No Owls by Gary Edwards also stuck out for me, the working and reworking of the surface in an attempt to explore mark making techniques has left an interesting image with no real subject but lots of depth. 

It was an interesting year to walk around for me as I actually submitted three drawings for consideration and was rejected. It was the first year that I felt confident enough in my work to enter and I'm glad I did even though my work didn't make the cut this year.