The Woon Foundation very generously funds an open call shortlist exhibition - including three major prizes - each year to the total value of £40,000. The 1st prize supports a Fellowship designed to offer a fine art graduate a structured opportunity to further develop their critical and conceptual understanding as well as their studio practice. 

Woon Foundation Painting & Sculpture Prize is an important component of the partnership between Northumbria University and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. Now in its sixth year, the Prize is open to all UK undergraduate Fine Art students who are in their final year of study, graduating in summer 2018.

The Art Prizes 

1st Prize the Woon Tai Jee Art Fellowship will include:

  • A year-long Woon Residency in the Woon Tai Jee Studio in Newcastle upon Tyne for the duration of the Fellowship from September 2018 until October 2019
  • A bursary of £20,000 to be used to pay for the Fellowship in the Woon Tai Jee Studio and to contribute towards materials and subsistence
  • The requirement to work towards a body of new work, which will be exhibited in a solo show in one of Northumbria University’s galleries in October 2019
  • A mentor to support the critical and professional development of the Fellow

2nd Prize the Lim Ai Fang Art Prize = £9,000

3rd Prize the Cheong Kam Hee Art = £6,000

Entry Criteria

The following criteria apply to entrants:

  • Applicants must be in the final year of an undergraduate Fine Art degree at a UK University
  • Entries are limited to painting and sculpture

Application Process

Participants are required to submit: 

  • A Curriculum Vitae (CV )
  • Personal contact details
  • Contact details of two referees 
  • A statement of 500 words outlining the applicant's reasons for wishing to become a Fellow and how the Fellowship would benefit their development and current fine art practice
  • Eight digital images of current work
Should false or misleading information have been provided the University reserves and retains the right to reject any application and/or withhold any award.

 Short Listing 

  • Ten artists will be shortlisted from the applications
  • The short listed artists will be required to submit work to an exhibition hosted by Northumbria University from which the final winners will be selected
  • Artists will be informed by e-mail as to whether they have been shortlisted and sent a Schedule A form which must be used to submit their technical requirements
  • We will do our very best to help realise your ambition for the work but please note the following limitations during the planning stages:

- The ceiling within the gallery space will not support any significant weight

- The floors of the gallery cannot be drilled into

- The entry and exit points to the gallery have the following dimensions 150cm wide x 200cm high with a diagonal of 250cm.  Please ensure that your work can fit through this aperture.

- Materials that are considered to present an ethical or health & safety risk cannot be accepted i.e. blood, latex etc

  • It is essential that each artist submit their technical requirements by Monday 11 June on the Schedule A form along with at up to six images of the completed or developing work/s of art. This will enable the curatorial and technical team to consider the requirements of each artist and how best to support them. They will then discuss and agree any modifications that might be required with the artist concerned.
  • The shortlisted artists can submit a maximum of 2 works of art (i.e. 2 paintings or 2 sculptures or 1 painting and 1 sculpture) for display in the exhibition
  • Each artist will have the following space available for their work irrespective of whether they produce one or two works of art:

- 200 cm2 wall space for two dimensional works of art

- 200 cm3 floor space for free standing works of art

  • Each shortlisted artist will receive a total of £500 including:

- A £300 artist fee paid in advance 
- £200 travel and accommodation costs paid during the installation of the exhibition.

  • Shortlisted artists will receive an enhancement to cover the transportation costs of the delivery and removal of their work.
  • Each artist will be allocated a space in the gallery that will have been determined by the information provided on the Schedule A form and the supporting images.
  • All Artwork must be delivered to Northumbria University on Monday 2 July, between 9.30 and 13.00
  • Each artist is responsible for arranging the transportation to and from Northumbria University
  • Each artist will install their own work with the assistance of the Northumbria University Technical team between Monday 2 July - Wednesday 4 July
  • The work of each artist will be risk assessed during and after installation and any adjustments discussed and agreed upon in compliance with the University protocols
  • All packing materials to be provided by the artists and removed for the duration of the exhibition
  • Shortlisted artists will be required to attend the exhibition preview and award ceremony in 9 July 2018.
  • The shortlisted artists and/or any applicant may not claim against or hold responsible the organisers, Northumbria University, BALTIC and/or the Woon Foundation for any loss of or damage to their/his/her works of art, however caused, be it fire, theft, negligence, vandalism, acts of terrorism, earthquake or otherwise. 

Judging Criteria 

The panel of judges has been drawn from Northumbria University and BALTIC supported by independent external advisors and the winner of the Woon Foundation Painting & Sculpture Prize 2017 and includes:

  • Dean Hughes - Head of the Department of Arts, Northumbria University
  • Alessandro Vincentelli - Curator of Exhibitions and Research, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art
  • Hannah Firth - Director of Visual Arts and Programme / Deputy Director, Chapter
  • Kathryn Brame Engagement and Development Coordinator, Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art, Sunderland
  • Joy Labinjo - Woon Fellow 2017/18 

The judges will be looking for participants whose practice will benefit the most from the opportunities offered. They will be looking for an awareness of the broad context of painting and sculpture in terms of the relationship between conceptual and traditional techniques as well as excellence in terms of: 

  • Content 
  • Aesthetic 
  • Technique 
  • Understanding and development of the medium and materials


  • Thursday 1 February: Applications open
  • Tuesday 3 April, 23.59: Application deadline 
  • Wednesday 4 April – Friday 13 April: Judging takes place to identify the ten short listed applicants
  • Monday 16 April: Applicants notified by e-mail as to whether they have been shortlisted and Schedule A forms sent out
  • Monday 11 June: Shortlisted artists to submit details of their technical requirements using the Schedule A form with up to six images of the completed or developing work/s of art
  • Monday 2 July 10.00 until Wednesday 4 July 17.00: Install work/s of art
  • 9 July: Judging
  • 9 July 2018: Shortlist exhibition Private View & Prize announcement at Northumbria University Gallery
  • The exhibition will have an initial five week run with the possibility of an extension
  • September 2018 – October 2019: The Woon Tai Jee Art Fellow takes up their residency in the Woon Tai Jee Studio, Newcastle upon Tyne


  • The winning works shall be available to become the property of the Woon Foundation
  • Prize winners will retain all statutory and common law rights (e.g. copyright) in their respective winning entry
  • In entering the competition, all participants grant the organisers, Northumbria and/or the Woon Foundation and those authorised by them or any one of them a permanent licence to reproduce the works submitted to create the catalogue, archive the images of submitted works and publicise the works on websites and in any other form of communication chosen by the organisers Northumbria and/or the Woon Foundation
  • The digital materials and any texts submitted for the competition will be archived by the organisers
  • The organisers and/or Northumbria retain the right to change the terms and conditions of the Art Prizes and the rules and regulations of the competition in connection therewith as appropriate.
Data Protection Act 1998

The data provided on the application form will be used for the following purposes only to enable applications to be considered, to enable the catalogue to be compiled, to enable the University to compile statistics, or to assist other organisations or individual research workers to do so, provided that no statistical information could identify any individuals involved without their authority, and to enable the University to compile the Fellowship record.

Terms and Conditions

Please see further terms and conditions.

For further information regarding entry to the competition please contact:

Niomi Fairweather: niomif@balticmill.com

For any queries regarding the exhibition space, technical support etc. please contact:

A Jean E Brown: 0777 597 4708 / jean.brown@northumbria.ac.uk