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Wells Art Contemporary 2021




For its 10th edition, Wells Art Contemporary (WAC) received over 3,500 submissions from 1,800 creatives hailing from 45 different countries. Established in 2012 by artists for artists, Wells Art Contemporary (WAC) is an open competition for innovative visual art. 

This year’s judges, artists Amanda Loomes, Jonathan Yeo, Simon Periton and Will Nash had the difficult task of dwindling down the shortlist. Ultimately, they selected 91 artworks, which showcase the very best in contemporary art in the UK and across the world. There will also be 28 installations which were designed specifically for the Cathedral and its grounds. 

All of the shortlisted works will be displayed in the much-anticipated WAC exhibition, returning to Wells Cathedral from Saturday 28 August to Sunday 26 September. There will also be a virtual version of the exhibition starting from Monday, 2nd of August.

The exhibition will coincide with the installation of a brand-new piece by world-famous sculptor Antony Gormley, best known for his Angel of the North. Cast in iron and just over life-size, the work will be unveiled on the West Front of Wells Cathedral.

With the support of Arts Council England, the Wells Art Contemporary exhibition will be available:

  • online from Monday 2 August,
  • at Wells Cathedral from Saturday 28 August to Sunday 26 September. The 91 artworks will be exhibited in the cloisters and the 28 art installations throughout the Cathedral. 

The exhibition is free to see.

For further information, please visit www.wellsartcontemporary.co.uk

Prizes Details: 

The following prizes will be awarded to outstanding works in the WAC 2021 exhibition:

  • Howden Art Award: £2,000 awarded to one artist selected by Howden Group.
  • People’s Choice Prize: £500 awarded to one artist selected by visitors of the exhibition.
  • Grace Student Awards: £100 each to three students and free entry to first 100 students, awarded by Tracey Grace. 
  • Somerset Art Works Festival Award: an entry in the Somerset Art Works Festival 2022 with curatorial support, and 1-year SAW Membership.
  • JGM Gallery Prize: works by selected artists will be showcased online by JGM Gallery.
  • NG Creative Art Residency: a two-week placement at the NG Art Creative Residency in Eygalières, Provence.
  • Parker Harris Mentoring Prize: one-to-one mentoring covering all aspects of professional development to a selected artist.
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