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'PP' by Artist Shikyba


Judges Comments

What fascinated me with 'PP', was the subtlety the message was transmitted through the work - elegant, fragile, feminine yet with a powerful undertone of political and perhaps religious unrest. This contradiction of masculinity and femininity so beautifully captured enables the work to take a life of its own. Mila Askarova

'PP', represents Shikyba's troubled background in the repressed environment of Afghanistan and works as a beautiful graphic image as well as portraying the violence and misogyny of her homeland. Gaye Black

'PP', stood out for me right from the start as an artwork which was expressive, challenging and highly original. There is both a delicacy in the lines depicting the female form and traditional coverings and a brutality in the stark black and white divisions and the splatterings of red across the work, clearly depicting blood and terrible wounds. This is a piece of artwork which would speak across borders, cultures, languages and beliefs. It is a universal piece and a well-deserved winner. Miriam Halahmy

Very Highly Commended


Artist Jane Andrews

Station of the Skirt evokes the work of Paula Rego and Goya. The triptych is awash with symbolism and shows Jane Andrews to be a very talented painter. Thought provoking. Gaye Black

Station of the Skirt, caught my attention with its absurdity and the quality of artistic talent. A story is told allowing each of the paintings in the triptych to reveal and unravel a snapshot of a bizarre scenery involving repeated elements - the face of the main subject is covered until we reach the last piece of the triptych, traces of a rat (as one of the titles suggests) or an unidentified creature is visible in the first two paintings and yet disappears in the final piece. The work constantly suggests varying statements which allows the viewer to explore and discover new elements each time. Mila Askarova

Station of the Skirt, I love the composition and story-telling in these paintings. But in particular the quality of the painting which I feel combines the observation of the old masters with some of the humour of the surrealists. This drew my eye and has stayed with me. I am very pleased that this work is the runner up. Miriam Halahmy

Judges Personal Favorites

Expanse by Emily Cooper, speaks volumes with a visual simplicity. A pure, fragile and ethereal landscape allows the viewer to embrace and embark on a journey through memory and time. I think any viewer looking at this piece will be taken far away into their own thoughts - making the piece a reflection of the viewer. Mila Askarova

After Louise by Wendy has an amazing presence and I have felt compelled to return again and again to this representation of Louise Bourgeois. It calls to mind her troubled life and images of prison like rooms, spiders, and her work with textiles, but above all, her ability to rise above personal trauma and create such powerful work. It is somehow more lifelike than life itself, technically perfect and truly capturing the spirit of Louise. Representing her as a human pin cushion with needles and thread really sums up her life. Gaye Black

My Angel by Geraldine Evans ,this striking painting was on my shortlist from the start. I love the combination of the contemporary - the teenager's goth hair and skinny jeans - with the old fashioned furnishings and room. Every surface on this painting could be stroked and would feel warm and soft. The painting has a sense of the love which inspired it. A mother's love. I also love the way the colour of the jeans at the bottom of the painting bleeds into the colour of the sofa and then, as the eye moves up, the picture becomes lighter and lighter. Lovely to see the painting receive recognition. Miriam Halahmy

Mila Askarova, Gaye Black, Miriam Halahmy and JoWonder at Blacks Club, Soho, London The judges (left to right): Mila Askarova, Gaye Black, Miriam Halahmy and Director JoWonder.

Location: Blacks Club, 67 Dean Street, Soho, London. W1D 4QH

Prize giving at Blacks Club, Soho, London Prize giving (left to right): Friend of Shikyba, Shikyba (Winner), Friend of Emily Cooper, Emily Cooper, JoWonder (Director)

Location: Blacks Club, 67 Dean Street, Soho, London. W1D 4QH

Background: Christmas Installation by JoWonder is in the background.

2010 Competition Winner   2009 Competition Winner

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