Int’l Call for BP Portrait Painting Award 2018, submit by Jan 22 2018

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Jessica by Laura Quinn Harris, March 2017 © Laura Quinn Harris

BP Portrait Painting Award 2018

Deadline for Submissions: January 22, 2018
Open to artists 18+ as of Jan 1, 2018
One entry per artists – must have been completed after Jan 1 2017
Entry Fee: £40

The BP Portrait Award is the most prestigious portrait painting competition in the world and represents the very best in contemporary portrait painting. With a first prize of £35,000, and a total prize fund of £74,000, the Award is aimed at encouraging artists to focus upon and develop portraiture in their work.

The competition is open to everyone aged 18 and over.

The BP Portrait Award 2018 exhibition will run at the National Portrait Gallery from 14 June to 23 September 2018. It is in its thirty-ninth year at the National Portrait Gallery and twenty-ninth year of sponsorship by BP and continues to be an unmissable highlight of the annual art calendar.

Call for Entries closing date: 22 January 2018

Find out about how to photograph your work here

We are no longer accepting postal entries for the competition. All submissions must be made online via the website.


  • First Prize: A cash award of £35,000, plus, at the judges’ discretion, a commission worth £7,000, to be agreed between the National Portrait Gallery and the artist.
  • Second Prize: £12,000
  • Third Prize: £10,000
  • BP Young Artist Award: £9,000

All selected artists aged between 18 and 30 will automatically be considered for both the BP Young Artist Award and the BP Portrait Award, but an individual cannot win both. If there are no exhibitors aged 30 or under then no Young Artist Award will be given and the funds so available shall be used to offer a Fourth Prize.

BP Travel Award 2018: £8,000

All selected artists will be eligible to submit a proposal for the BP Travel Award. The aim of the Award is to provide the opportunity for an artist to experience working in a different environment, in Britain or abroad, on a project related to portraiture which will then be shown as part of the BP Portrait Award 2019 exhibition and tour in 2019 – 20.

Contact us

For all further enquiries please contact:

BP Portrait Award 2017
National Portrait Gallery
St Martin’s Place
London WC2H 0HE
020 7321 6699

Office hours are 9.00 – 17.00, Monday – Friday.

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