Following the launch of our degree showcase, I am delighted to announce that three OCA graduands have been nominated for the New Blood Emerging Artists Prize.
Programme Leaders from the eligible pathways convened to select students whose work best fitted the prize and who had demonstrated exceptional creativity and professionalism. Here is a little more information about the graduands and you can find out more about the prize here.
Steve Cussons – Creative Arts
Steve Cussons’ project ‘Active Matter ‘ was inspired by physics, the science of matter and energy. These works arose from research into Karen Barad’s philosophy of ‘Agential Realism’. She proposes that all bodies, including the human body, are indeterminate, without boundaries, constantly exchanging particles and energy with our surroundings.
Arlene Sharp - Painting
Arlene’s paintings evoke a sense of place, reflecting her personal response to the natural world expressed through space, form, colour and light. Gathering visual information through walking in the local area and travels further afield, recent paintings, large hanging canvases and photographs were inspired by the ancient woodland of Grimsdyke Woods in Harrow Weald. Arlene says: ‘I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to show my work onto this platform and would like to thank the OCA for nominating me. ‘
Anna Sellen - Photography
Anna Sellen works across photography, film, sound, installation and text. Her conceptually driven projects interrogate political and social issues through the prism of personal experience, research and explorations of archives. In recent work, Anna questions the Cold War legacy through the physical space of the bunker and her family archive. She uses photography, oral history, archives and diaries to examine her own and her family’s lived experiences in the Soviet Union between 1952 and 1986. This project evolved from her earlier work ‘Bunker Diaries’ that won the Shutter Hub Portfolio Award at FORMAT 2021.
In addition to gallery representation and a group show, all shortlisted artists will have Artsy profiles created to showcase their work, and a notable panel of art world professionals will select the overall winner. The winner will receive an immersive 4-week art residency at SPUD in the New Forest (with travel and living expenses paid), a solo show in 2024, and weekly one-to-one mentoring with the curator of New Blood, Sarah Ryan (online). I am sure you all join me in wishing our nominees all the best. I know simply being on the platform has already resulted in further opportunities for at least one of our nominees.