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BP Portrait Award 2016 – our winners

It’s that time of year again – the annual BP Portrait Award, this year selected from 2,557 entries by artists from 80 countries around the world. Now in its 37th year at the National Portrait Gallery, and with a first prize of £30,000 up for grabs, it’s regarded as one of the most prestigious competitions around.

Showing 53 pieces of artwork, from burgeoning fresh faced talent to established heavyweights of the art world, the range of styles and subjects is varied, from family members to famous faces, expressive sketch styles to photo-realism.

First prize this year was by Artist Clara Drummond of her friend Kirsty in the understated piece ‘Girl in a Liberty Dress’.

The runners up included Chinese artist Bo Wang for his painting of his grandmother in hospital called ‘Silence’ and third place was for Benjamin Sullivan for his portrait of poet Hugo Williams.

1st, 2nd and 3rd prize winners are below…




And we decided to choose our own…

Sarah’s favourite: ‘Laurie Weeden, D-Day Glider Pilot’ by Martin Yeoman

The painting was one of four studies that the artist made following a commission by HRH the Prince of Wales of surviving D-Day Veterans for the exhibition ‘The last of the Tide’ at the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace, London 2015.

Tiff’s favourite: ‘Haydn As Henry’ by Stephen Earl Rogers

The portrait is of the artist’s nephew, Haydn, and celebrates the young man’s love of film. At Haydn’s suggestion, for the competition, he recreates the opening scene from the film Goodfellas.


Lyndsey’s favourite: ‘Petras’ by Laura Guoke

This was the winner of the BP Travel Award, Laura used sketches, photographs and film material to depicted the most vulnerable refugees from Syria and the volunteers helping them.


Lauren’s favourite: ‘Falk’ by David Von Bassewitz

The portrait is of the artist’s close friend Falk, shown in his apartment, filled with books, paintings, drawings and sculpture. Von Bassewitz says, “It’s like entering Falk’s train of thought. You could say his apartment in itself is a kind of portrait with him as the centre.”

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