Winners of the Cooper Prize announced

The winners of the prestigious art competition, The Cooper Prize were announced at a virtual ceremony on Friday, 19 March.

Shortlisting took place earlier this month and judges had the arduous task of whittling down the submissions from over 380 entries, of which the quality was outstanding.  A rigorous and robust online scoring mechanism was designed to allow the judges to evaluate all of the submissions safely and fairly.

Winners of the categories are as follows:

Cooper Prize Winner - Poseidon by Kieran Ingram

Highly Commended - Simply Savoy by Rachel Lewis

Commended – Badger by Matt Butt

Sadler Award Winner  - My Grandad by Georgina Oldknow

Highly Commended – Lonely in a Crowd by Jack Green

Commended – Barnabas by Jessica Brown

Fox Gift Winner -  Moonlight by Charlie Wilding

Highly Commended – Girl in Glasses by Sophie Grace Roberts

Commended – The Characters by Harry Palmer

Barnsley College Special Award - My Grandad by Georgina Oldknow

The Cooper Gallery was hugely impressed with the volume and quality of the entries, and the shortlisted works will form a stunning exhibition that will be displayed online from Friday, 19 March until Saturday, 12 June. Visitors will also be able to view the artwork in person when the gallery reopens its doors on Monday, 17 May, following Governments guidelines.

Prizes won included £1,000 in cash (sponsored by the Cooper Trustees), a solo exhibition, inclusion in the Cooper Prize exhibition, space in the recently refurbished Cooper Cottage artist studios and vouchers to spend of artists materials.

The Gallery have worked collaboratively with Barnsley College throughout the process and together they have engaged with young people across the borough and beyond.  This will be highlighted in the exhibition which will showcase new, emerging, local talent and hopefully be a springboard for future success. There have also been entries from Barnsley Academy students who have taken part in the competition for the first time and used their time in lockdown to create artwork.

Cllr Tim Cheetham, Cabinet Spokesperson for Place (Regeneration and Culture) said:

“We are absolutely delighted by the volume and quality of entries to the competition and it has made it an extremely difficult job for the judges in shortlisting winners.  The Cooper Gallery has always been a supporter of local artists and we are pleased we are able to put a spotlight on South Yorkshire talent in this way.  Although restrictions mean the Gallery will be closed until Monday, 17 May people can still experience the exhibition digitally from the comfort of their home and visit in person when it is safe to do so.”

To watch the award ceremony and the online exhibition, visit the Cooper Gallery Facebook Barnsley Museums YouTube page or

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