A new international art competition has been launched: 'My Place On The Isle: Exploring Faith & Identity'. The aim is to "nurture and celebrate contemporary art in Britain".
Anyone can enter, and artists are being encouraged to explore any of the following themes in their work: faith, identity, race, culture, family, politics, employment, marriage, inspiration etc.
The organisers, Mica Creative, will be holding an exhibition of the work at the Mica Gallery in Sloane Square and the winners will be celebrated at an awards ceremony in central London in June.
There will also be a 'pop-up' exhibition on the King's Road/Sloane Square and a chance for local businesses near the gallery to showcase their favourite piece from the shortlist.
In order to help facilitate the competition, Mica Creative has also been holding free workshops in order to "create a safe space for people to discuss issues, and equip them with the tools to express themselves in order to submit a composition that is of a high enough standard for the competition."
These have been so successful and have gathered people from such a cross-section of religions – and those of no faith – that the organisers are going to continue running them beyond the competition.
Reedah El-Saie, director of Mica Creative, said: "This project came about because we wanted to do something creative and visual for the Olympics. We chose faith and identity as themes as they seem to be dividing regional, national and international communities and causing conflict around the world.
"We wanted to encourage people to think about what faith really means to them. We live in a secular society but faith influences people's daily lives and we wanted people to take time out and reflect on their sense of spirituality – or not – to really explore those feelings through art to create understanding of the 'other'. Art is a silent visual medium that is often more powerful than words.
"This really is an art competition for everyone and we hope to have as many Christian artists involved as those from other religions."
The competition is being judged by a highly qualified team of judges from some of the art world's most renowned institutions including Sotheby's, Saatchi Gallery and The British Museum.
The competition website includes an 'artists corner', where the work of the artists applying will be featured. Members of the public are being encouraged to post their views of the artworks.
The deadline for the competition is April 30th, and the judging will take place during May 2012.
April 6th, 2012 - Posted & Written by Claire Musters