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Prizes and Awards

Each year, the University of Oxford offers a selection of art related prizes and awards. Ruskin students are invited to consider these opportunities in a bid to encourage their artistic development in new areas and are presented with awards in recognition of their expertise and success.

Vivien Leigh Art Prize

A prize is offered by the Ashmolean Museum from the Vivien Leigh Fund for a two-dimensional work of art on paper, not exceeding 55 by 40 centimetres, by an undergraduate member of the University.

Value: £350

The work will be chosen, if a work of sufficient merit is submitted, by the Keeper of Western Art in the Ashmolean Museum from work submitted to the Print Room by Friday of seventh week in Trinity Term or work exhibited at the annual Degree Show at the Ruskin School of  Art.

It is a condition of the award that the winning work be given to the Ashmolean.

For further details, please contact the Western Art Print Room, Ashmolean Museum: or tel. 278049.

Winner 2012 : Amba Sayal-Bennett (The Queen’ College)

Winner 2013 : Tara Benjamin-Morgan (St Catherine’s College)

Winner 2014 : Alexandra Pullen (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2015: Joe Mackay (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2016: Mariette Moor (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2017: Eleanor Minney (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2018:  Jessica Heywood (St Edmund Hall)


Egerton Coghill Landscape Prize

The Egerton Coghill Landscape Prize will be awarded, if an entry of sufficient quality is submitted, for the best small landscape painting painted during the twelve months preceding the closing date for entries by a member of the University who is at that date reading for any degree, diploma, or certificate of the University.

Value: £350

Entries must not exceed four square feet in area and should be sent unframed to Head of School, Ruskin School of  Art, 74 High Street, Oxford OX1 4BG, no later than 12noon on Friday of fourth Week in Trinity Term (in 2018, 18 May), with a statement signed by the competitor that the work has been painted in the preceding twelve months. No competitor may submit more than one entry for any one competition, and the winner of the prize in any one year shall not be eligible to compete in any subsequent year.

Winners 2012 : Lucy Mayes (St Hugh’s) + Tara Morgan (St Catherine’s)

Winner 2013 : Evelyn Kitt (The Queen’s College)

Winner 2014 :  Arieh Frosh (New College)

Winner 2015: Lucy Gregory (New College)

Winner 2016: Mariota Spens (Magdalen)

Winner 2017:  Luke Dawes (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2018: Julia Michiewicz (St. Catherine's)


Gibbs Prize in Fine Art

The Gibbs Prize in Fine Art, is awarded by the examiners for the best overall result achieved across all aspects of the Final Honours School in Fine Art (BFA) – exhibition, portfolio, exam paper on History & Theory of Visual Culture and an extended essay.

Value: £200

Winner 2015:  Laurien Ash (Magdalen College)

Winner 2016: Lucy Gregory (New College)

Winner 2017: Josie Perry (The Queen's College)

Winner 2018:  Rufus Rock (Brasenose)


Geoffrey Rhoades Commemorative Bursary

The bursary, will be awarded, if there is a candidate of sufficient merit, by the examiners in the Preliminary Examination in Fine Art to the candidate whom they regard as the most outstanding on the basis of work submitted for the examination.

Value: £100

Winner 2012 : Emily Motto (The Queen’s College)

Winner 2013: Amy Thellusson (Magdalen College)

Winner 2014 : Rebecca Thornton (St John's College)

Winner 2015: Josie Perry (The Queen's College)

Winner 2016; Ella Joyce (Worcester College)

Winner 2017: Clara Atkinson (Brasenose College)


Human Anatomy Prize

The prize is awarded for outstanding performance in Human Anatomy in the Preliminary Examination in Fine Art.

The successful artist selects some work created during their year of anatomy study for display in the Ruskin library. 

Value: £300

Winner 2012 : Emma D’Arcy (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2013 : Sonia Bernaciak (New College)

Winner 2014 : Lucy Brackin (Christ Church)

Winner 2015: Margaret Chung (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2016: Jessica Heywood (St Edmund Hall)

Winner 2017: Rhian Harris-Mussi (Lady Margaret Hall)

Winner 2018: Emily Stevenhagen (St Catherine's)


Kevin Slingsby Prize for Funnel Vision

The Kevin Slingsby Prize for Funnel Vision is open to all undergraduates at the Ruskin School of Art for work in any media. The prize was established in 2006 to celebrate the life and work of Kevin Slingsby, who taught at the Ruskin for 21 years and had a profound effect on the hundreds of students he worked with. The judges will be looking for creative and original thinking and the prize is awarded on those grounds, rather than for a specific piece of work and regardless of media.

The shortlisting and judging takes place in Trinity Term and the panel includes members of the Slingsby family, a member of academic staff from the Ruskin School and a member of the Ruskin School alumni body.  In 2018, the judging panel will be Brian Catling, Holly Slingsby, Tom Slingsby, Tom Woolner and Chloe Dewe Mathews.

Value: £500

Entries need to be submitted in one pdf with a max size of 5MB titled with your name and year of study with a statement of up to 50 words, together with three images, and their titles, sizes and media where appropriate. You are also welcome to include links to film and Youtube clips on the web (up to 5 minutes each).

Please submit 2 copies of your entries by Friday 27 April 2018 to:

 i) Holly Slingsby by email :  Please ensure your name is included in the subject title in the email and on the submitted file. 

ii) The open shared folder (titled Funnel Vision Prize) in the Media Lab at Bullingdon Road. Please ensure that your pdf is titled with your name.

Judging will take place on Friday 4 May at 128 Bullingdon Road.  

Winner 2012 : Jan Kaesbach (St Anne’s)

Winner 2013:  James Cross (Christ Church)

Winner 2014 : Melanie Eckersley (Lady Margaret Hall) 

Winner 2015: Jose-Mateo Revillo (Christ Church) 

Winner 2016: Hannah Oram (St Hugh's)

Winner 2017: Josie Perry (Queen's)

Winner 2018: Sid Smith (St. John's)


Stuart Morgan Prize for Art History

The Stuart Morgan Prize is awarded by the examiners for the outstanding extended essay in BFA Finals. The prize commemorates the life and work of the art critic Stuart Morgan (1948-2002) who was a tutor at the Ruskin School from 1992-98. His criticism was renowned for its independence and originality, and a collection of his writings, What the Butler Saw, was published in 1996.

Value: £100

Winner 2012 : Amy Barker (Brasenose)

Winner 2013 : Daniel Udy (Brasenose)

Winner 2014:  Hana-Mai Hawkins (St Catherine's)

Winner 2015:  Laurien Ash (Magdalen College)

Winner 2016: Emily Freeman (Balliol)

Winner 2017: Louise Tidmarsh (Brasenose College)

Winner 2018: Sid Smith (St John's College)


The Sir William Dunn School for Pathology Art Award

The Sir William Dunn School for Pathology Art Award is open to all undergraduates and postgraduates at the Ruskin School of Art.  Students are invited to submit proposals for a site-specific work that will be displayed at the Sir William Dunn School for Pathology, South Parks Road, Oxford.

Proposals should consist of a statement of approximately 250 words, with supporting visuals.  Works should be inspired by the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, either directly through the subject area of pathology or by the school architecture.

The judging and announcement takes place in Trinity Term. Final dates for submission in 2017 are yet to be confirmed, including the date for an initial visit and tour of the Dunn School for Pathology, led by Professor Raff.

The winner will complete the commission over the summer vacation and install their work during the autumn. 

The Sir William Dunn School for Pathology retains the winning work for their art collection.

Value: £1000

Winner 2012: Cara George (Christ Church)

Winner 2013 : Lara Bellenghi (St Hugh’s)

Winners 2014 : Emma Papworth (The Queen's College) and Julia Sklar (St Hugh's)

Winners 2015: Eleanor Minney (St Edmund Hall) and Mariette Moor (St Edmund Hall), with a special commission for Lucy Gregory (New College)

Winner 2016: Virginia Russolo (St Catherine's)


The Ashmolean Museum Design Award

The Ashmolean Museum invites all Fine Art students to create a design for potentially 3 to 5 products that can be produced and sold online and in the museum shop.  This is an opportunity to consider design within a commercial context based on the extensive range of collections in the museum.  You will identify the commercial potential of a design, consider the suitability of its application to a product, and work with museum staff on costings, its development and point of sale.  This award returns in 2017 after an original collaboration that began in 2013.

The judging panel are made up of museum professionals with retail and heritage sector product development and buying expertise.  The panel will be looking for originality, for the opportunity to develop gifts that will remind visitors of time spent in the museum whilst providing further exposure of the Ashmolean brand.  The inspiration for each design should be drawn from Ashmolean Museum objects. 

Note on copyright: Artist’s Copyright still applies to some objects in the Ashmolean’s collections. Therefore the work of any artist who died in 1947 or after is unsuitable for reproduction without the permission of the current rights holder, which is usually the artist or their estate. You should also avoid taking inspiration from objects on loan to the museum and focus on objects not within copyright which are part pf the Ashmolean’s permanent collection. 

Award timetable: 

Weds 26th April - Initial briefing at the Ashmolean Museum

Friday 26th May - Submission of design

Weds 31st May - Shortlisting by Ashmolean Panel

Weds 7th June - Interviews at the Ashmolean Museum

Thurs 8th June - Winner announced

In 2017, the winner will receive: 

*  Designs will be fully developed as an Ashmolean retail product range, to be sold onsite and online 

*  Final product samples for artist's own portfolio

*  A lunch voucher to the value of £50 for the museum rooftop restaurant

*  A shop voucher to the value of £50 to use in onsite shop

*  Complimentary tickets to an Ashmolean exhibition 

Winner 2013 : Emily Motto (The Queen’s College)    

Winner 2014: Evelyn Kitt  (The Queen's College)     

Winner 2015: Amber Rankin (Lady Margaret Hall)

Winner 2017: Asiyla Radwan (St Anne's)