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The Sovereign Art Foundation (SAF) is a charitable organisation founded in 2003 to recognise, support and promote contemporary art talent; and to bring the therapeutic benefits of art to disadvantaged children.

In the same year, SAF launched The Sovereign Asian Art Prize, now recognised as the most established and prestigious annual art award in Asia-Pacific. The Prize increases the international exposure of artists in the region, whilst raising funds by auctioning shortlisted artworks and sharing proceeds equally between the participating artists and SAF. SAF uses these proceeds to fund programmes that support disadvantaged children using expressive arts. This model has so far raised US$10 million for artists and charities worldwide. 

This year, SAF launched two new international art prizes: The Norval Sovereign African Art Prize and The Sovereign Portuguese Art Prize, each with the objective of increasing the international exposure of artists in these countries, whilst raising funds for local arts education programmes. 

You are invited to vote for your favourite artwork, either in the exhibition or online.

Last month, SAF announced the 20 students shortlisted as finalists for the Sovereign Art Foundation Students Prize Gibraltar, 2021. 

The Judges had the tricky task of shortlisting 20 artworks from the 126 entries submitted. The artworks range in subject matter from portraits and landscapes to a depiction of a mushroom in a clown’s suit and show the wonderful creativity, imagination and talent of Gibraltar’s secondary school students. Those in the shortlist range in age from 12-18. Gibraltar’s schools and institutions were well represented, with entries submitted from Westside School, Bayside Comprehensive School, the Gibraltar Girls High School, Prior Park School, Gibraltar and Gibraltar College. 

The twenty shortlisted artworks will be displayed in the Finalists’ Exhibition, which will be at the Fine Arts Gallery, Casemates: 6-11 December and John Mackintosh Hall: 13-17 December. The exhibition will then tour Gibraltar; venues include St Bernard’s Hospital and Hassans’ offices.  

There will be four prizes awarded to four different students. The winner of the Judge’s Prize will be awarded a trophy and £800; their school art department will receive £2,000. You are invited to vote for your favourite artwork, either in the exhibition or online. The most popular artwork will be awarded the Public Vote Prize, the winner of which will receive a trophy and £400; £1,000 for their school. Furthermore, the Hassans Prize will award £300 to both the student and their school. The Arts Society Gibraltar will award a £250 prize in the 11–14-year-old category. The winners will be announced at an Awards Ceremony on 15 December. 

The Judges and Public Gibraltar winners will be automatically entered into the annual SAF Global Students Prize, showcasing their talent on an international stage and facilitating cultural exchange and dialogue. 

The judging panel comprises Gibraltarian contemporary artist Christian Hook; Gallerist and Curator Magda Bellotti; Arts & Heritage professor Gabriela Giménez; and Howard Bilton, Founder and Chairman of SAF. Christian Hook commented: “I was impressed with the entries submitted. The general level was pretty high, and there are some fantastic pieces in the Finalists’ Exhibition.” 

This prize would not have been possible without the generous support of sponsors and SAF are grateful to have generous backing from Hassans International Law Firm Limited as a gold sponsor; Simmons Gainsford and Image Graphics as silver sponsors and bronze supporters: Brooks MacDonald, Schroders, Silver Key, LGT Vestra and the Ministry for Culture, Gibraltar.  

Some of the Artworks of the final 20 shortlisted will be sold via silent auction at the agreement of each student. Sale proceeds and fundraising income will be split equally between the student and the local not-for-profit programmes SAF is funding locally. Please see the SAF website to bid for the artwork. Prints will also be available of the final 20 artworks, sold as part of a limited edition.

To find out more about the Prize and how to vote or bid for artworks, please visit: www.sovereignartfoundation.com/art-prizes/student-art-prize/gibraltar 

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The Gibraltar Magazine is your monthly business, entertainment, and lifestyle source. Providing the community with the latest breaking news and quality content since 1995. Every month, 100 pages are packed with gripping features from a cross- section of the Gibraltarian community in business, culture and leisure. We have pledged to support the wealth of local talent, constantly promoting young artists, musicians, authors and entrepreneurs and presenting what’s on around the Rock. In the business section, we focus on finance, property, and gaming industries. Embracing the latest technology and updating our website daily, we’re able to provide increased and up-to-the-minute information. The magazine has been operating for 25 years, which speaks volumes for our forward-thinking team who strive to take a fresh direction each month, as well as our loyal readership and confidence of advertisers.