Longlist announced for John Moores Painting Prize 2018

60 artworks to be exhibited as the Prize celebrates its 60th year

The Walker Art Gallery has announced the 60 artists whose paintings will feature in the John Moores Painting Prize 2018 exhibition, marking 60 years of the UK’s longest-established painting prize. The free exhibition will be held at the Walker from 14 July to 18 November, showing as part of Liverpool Biennial 2018.

Paintings were selected from more than 2,700 entries by an esteemed panel of jurors. This year’s jurors include artists Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, Lubaina Himid MBE, Bruce McLean and Liu Xiaodong, and curator Jenni Lomax. The names of the artists remain anonymous throughout the judging process.

From Amazon parcel collection lockers to Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper, subjects depicted within the selected paintings are wide-ranging. Vibrant abstracts will be exhibited alongside highly finished, meticulously detailed works; united in their mutual use of paint as a medium.

Some of this year’s artists have experimented with an inventive range of materials. Aluminium, silk, cardboard and even compostable food recycling bags are utilised in place of conventional canvases. Meanwhile, found objects, coins and felt pen are among the materials used in addition to paint.

Johnson, Ben, 2016, The Space Between Revisited, Acrylic on Canvas, 183×183.4

Sandra Penketh, Director of Art Galleries at National Museums Liverpool, said: “The 2018 exhibition will be a particularly significant one. For 60 years, the Prize has enabled the Walker to showcase and acquire work by a truly remarkable selection of contemporary artists, and this year will be no exception. 

“Self taught artists, art tutors, recent graduates and established artists are all represented, together providing a fascinating insight into what’s inspiring artists in the UK right now. Visitors will no doubt recognise the names of some talented past exhibitors, as well as discovering a host of exciting new names.”

Reflecting on the judging process, juror Jenni Lomax said: “After the nerve-wracking process of making the first cut from hundreds of digital images comes the surprise of seeing the paintings in their reality. Scale, texture, mark and material, all elusive on-screen, become evident in the next stage of selection. 

“Our lively and sometimes heated discussions while judging led to a final group of works that show dexterity, humour, passion and a strong physical sense of having been made.”

The jury will select a final shortlist of five paintings, from which the £25,000 first prizewinning work will be chosen and four additional prizes of £2,500 will be awarded. Visitors to the exhibition will also be invited to vote for their favourite painting to win the popular Visitors’ Choice Award, sponsored by Rathbones. The winning artist will receive £2,018.

In celebration of the Prize’s 60th anniversary year, an additional award will be offered to the first prize winner – a three month fellowship at Liverpool John Moores University together with an in-focus solo display at the Walker Art Gallery in 2019.

The artists selected to exhibit paintings in the John Moore Painting Prize 2018 are:

Ahmed, Miraj                             Smile
Bailey, Liz                                  No Ball Games
Baker, Richard                         Cupboard 2
Bakst, Marta                              I Still See You on the Horizon
Barker, Andy                             Nowhere to Go
Bingham, James                      Shere
Blane, Frances Aviva              Mother
Bruton, Jo                                  Tassel Talk
Busuttil, Carla                           Trophy for a Dull Man
Cadwallader, Gareth               Milk
Clark, Jake                                Circus
Clarke, Pete                              doubt and distance…of lost content
Crosby, Billy                              Quilt
Davies, Lara                              Me Reading ‘Philip Guston Retrospective’ in the Studio
Down, Tom                                ‘hollow’
Elton, Liz                                   One Hundred Harvests
Fears, Alan                               My Favourite Chair
Fineman, Emma                      Questions of Silence
Franklin, Charlie                      Flatland
Gasson, Clare                          Note-taking September 2016
Gerrard, Jahan                         Aerial
Hain, Alex                                 #consumer
Hallum, Jacqui                         King and Queen of Wands
Hogarth, Delphine                   French Summer
Holloway, Leo                           Untitled
Homerston, Ian                         Untitled
Howse, Tom                              The Thunderous Silence of Your Presence
Jeong, Seungjo                        Interface L3
Johnson, Ben                           The Space Between Revisited
Johnson, Nicholas William     The Intolerable Strangeness of Vegetable Consciousness (Sunspilt II)
Kiki, John                                  Bud Girl
Krishanu, Matthew                  Mission School
Kulkarni, Nicholas                   Misdirection
Lancaster, Laura                      Untitled
Lawrence, Gary                        Kos Town Paradise Hotel Front Terrace
Lock, David                               El Muniria
Maple, Kathryn                         Alone in the Desert
Martin, Graham                        Red Road
Matsuzaki, Tomoya                  Untitled (Willow)
Matthews, Peter                       Suspended Aura
Nahaul, Cara                            Inches of Dust
Ní Mhaonaigh, Sinéad           Monument
Noga, Laurence                       Deep Blue Filtered Silver
Norris, Olivia                             Loose sugar, fade to black, bread makes you fat
O’Rourke, Joseph                    GIANTS
Osborne, Mark                          Untitled Pink
Oshilaja, Damilola                   Landscape Redux; No-nVOID/26: IDARIKA, The Land & The Sky                           
Panchal, Shanti                       The Divide, Beyond Reasoning
Payne, Alistair                          (D)welling
Payne, Steve                            Unnamable
Pearce, David                           Greenhouse
Rejmer-Canovas, Gracjana    Electric Landscape
Robertson, Joanne                  Raining on Shoebox Cove
Soni, Lucy                                 Untitled Bunting
Talbot, Emma                            Intense and Remote Connectivity
Stewart, Bill                               TreeAirplaneTrap
Thatcher, Clare                        Feature of Landscape
Verran, Virginia                        Black Star
Whittle, Joanna                        Rain Tent
Wills, Morgan                            Leadlight Silhouette

Bruton, Jo, 2016, Tassel Talk, Acrylic on board, 60×47.7

The names of the five prizewinning artists will be announced in July

Past prize winners include David Hockney (1967), Mary Martin (1969), Lisa Milroy (1989), Peter Doig (1993), Keith Coventry (2010) and Rose Wylie (2014). Sir Peter Blake, winner of the junior prize in 1961, is Patron of the Prize. The winner of the prestigious first prize in 2016 was Michael Simpson with his painting, Squint (19).

Five prizewinning paintings from the John Moores Painting Prize China will also be displayed in the 2018 exhibition. Organised by the College of Fine Arts at Shanghai University, the China Prize was launched in 2010 to support the development of painting in China.

The John Moores Painting Prize is organised in partnership with the John Moores Liverpool Exhibition Trust and is supported by its exhibition partner Weightmans. The exhibition is showing as part of Liverpool Biennial 2018, the largest festival of contemporary art in the UK taking place across the city’s public spaces, galleries and museums from 14 July to 28 October.

Visitors to the John Moores Painting Prize 2018 exhibition will also be able to see work by past prize winner Sean Scully in Sean Scully: 1970, a free exhibition that also opens on 14 July (until 18 November). Widely regarded as the master of post-minimalist abstraction, Scully was a prize winner in 1972 and again in 1974.


Krishanu, Matthew, 2017, Mission School, Oil on canvas, 150×200


@JMPaintingPrize / #JM2018