Artists' Space

Photo Susan Davis

Open Call for WAC Awards

The WAC Awards is an international visual arts competition.

The WAC Awards is an open competition for contemporary visual art that is gaining praise and respect in Britain and abroad. It was established in 2012 by a group of artists and their friends in Wells, the beautiful cathedral city in the South-West of England. An idea that came to life around kitchen and dining tables has already established a strong presence in the London, national and international art world and is drawing artists from places as diverse as Australia, Azerbaijan, India, Italy, Korea, Japan and the United States, as well as all over UK.


All artists based in the UK or internationally, who are over the age of 18 on the 1st January 2020 are invited to apply. A third party may also submit work on the artists behalf with the full permission of the artist.


Artists may enter up to four works.

Entries can be any medium – painting, sculpture, drawing, printmaking, photography, installation or video. We regret that we cannot exhibit digital work unless all necessary equipment is provided by the artist (for example: monitors, screens, DVD players, headphones etc).


Entry Fee is £15 per work or £12 per work for current students.


  • RK Harrison Award:  £2,000 awarded to one artist
  • JGM Gallery Exhibition Prize*:  up to 4 artists, including international artists, will be selected to take part in an exhibition in 2020 at the JGM Gallery in the heart of London’s new cultural quarter next to the Royal College of Art in London.
  • NG Art Creative Residency*:  The NG Art Creative Residency Prize aims to discover and celebrate emerging and established creative talents from a variety of disciplines. The Prize Winner will receive a free two-week placement at the NG Art Creative Residency in Eygalieres, Provence. This includes board and lodging, studio space, mentorship and residency-related outings.
  • Next Generation Art Prize*:  Andelli Art’s ‘Next Generation Art Prize’ recognises and supports the talents of artists of 30 years of age and under. The winner/s will be invited to participate in a two week group exhibition at the gallery in 2021, including a private view and social media support.
  • Parker Harris Mentoring Prize*:  Parker Harris will give a one-to-one mentoring session covering all aspects of professional development to a selected artist.
  • Chubb Bulleid People’s Prize:  £500 selected by visitors to the exhibition.
  • Somerset Art Works Festival 2021 Award*: Somerset Art Works would like to offer a Somerset-based artist the opportunity to conduct research and develop a plan to create a new body of work which will be showcased during the Somerset Art Works Festival 2021. Somerset Art Works wants to enable new and exciting ideas that support the artist in developing their practice. We welcome applications from artists working in cross-disciplinary practices, such as new media, installation, moving-image, sound, live performance and socially-engaged practice. The selected artist will receive the following: Free entry to take part in the Somerset Art Works Festival 2021 with curatorial support, and 1 year SAW Membership; Mentoring, advice and support on artistic development and marketing from SAW Team; Financial support of up to £500 towards research and production.


Due to the current Government guidance, Wells Cathedral is currently closed for all events.  With the full support of the Dean they are delighted to confirm that WAC will be held as soon as the Cathedral is open and dates for this exhibition will be announced in due course.

In the meantime, the selected work for the 2020 exhibition will be shown as a virtual online gallery.  All works can be for sale from the virtual gallery and the team will be using all their efforts to promote this exhibition and the selected artists with an extensive social media campaign.

All exhibitors will be invited to the Private View and Prize-Giving in the Cathedral during the exhibition.


Entry is by online submission through this website and the deadline for entry is 1 August 2020.

To submit and find out more go here.

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  • Fenton Arts Trust

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