Published 21st June 2018
The Thelma Hulbert Gallery (THG) welcomed over 120 visitors to the opening of their new exhibition: THG Open 2018.
Out of a record-breaking 197 entries, 71 artworks were chosen to be exhibited at the gallery, which are now on show until 25th August 2018.
The Best Emerging Artist prize of £250 (awarded to an artist who has recently graduated or is under 25) was won by James Carstairs for his artwork Crowd Identity. The judges were so impressed with this work that they made the unprecedented decision also to award him the main prize of £750, sponsored by Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood auctioneers.
The selection process was anonymous with the judges choosing from the artworks without the artist's details. This year's selection panel consisted of Angela Blackwell (THG curator), Tim Woolgar (Hybrid Gallery owner), Brian Goodison-Blanks (Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood auctioneers) and Amelia Kyriacou (member of the THG Youth Group Masterpieces).
The exhibition was opened by Councillor Andrew Moulding, Chairman of East Devon District Council who commented:
I was impressed with how many people came to the opening. Many congratulations to this young artist, James Carstairs, for winning both the prizes. I would also like to thank the THG Staff and volunteers who worked so hard at staging this exhibition.
James Carstairs, the winning artist said:
I was very pleased to be selected by the judges to exhibit as part of the THG summer exhibition. To then be awarded both Best Emerging Artist and Overall Winner was a massive shock, but I feel incredibly proud. My work explores interpersonal relationships, questions whether our individual identity becomes lost in a crowd and is an exciting exploration of movement.
Angela Blackwell, THG Curator said:
We were so impressed with the winning artwork from James Carstairs, who is currently studying at Plymouth University: what a fantastic achievement for him. Don’t forget to come and vote for your favourite artwork. The artist with the most votes will win the Visitors' Choice Prize at the end of the exhibition!
You can view the THG OPEN 2018 until 25th August 2018. it is open Tuesday to Saturday, 10:00am–5:00pm. Admission ia free.