A boy with a disability.

The first Unique Art Awards will be open for entries from 10 April 2016

On 4 April an exciting new initiative to champion the artistic talents of some of Britain’s brightest disabled youngsters launched. The first ever Unique Art Awards (UAA 2016), the brainchild of the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists (MFPA) Trust Fund for Training of Handicapped Children in the Arts, will celebrate five artistic mediums and encourage under 21’s across the land to unleash their creativity. The awards will be open to receive entries from 10 April until 31 July 2016.

Announced this week at the National Rotary Conference in Bournemouth, the Unique Art Awards will be judged by a panel of professional artists, including representatives of the MFPA Trust Fund charity and Rotary International. The awards will have two age groups, Child (7-15) and Youth (16-21) and feature five different categories – all under the subject ‘My World’ – resulting in a truly multi-disciplinary collection of artworks from some of Britain’s most talented young disabled artists.

The five categories and their entry requirements include:

  • Child/Youth Painter: whether watercolour, gouache or finger painting, create an original artwork inspired by ‘My World’
  • Child/Youth Photographer: wow us with your finest photography, even from your camera phone
  • Child/Youth 3D Sculptor: rather than post the sculpture, please send/email photos for the first round of judging
  • Child/Youth Poet: do you have a way with words? Showcase your skills with an original poem (no longer that 300 words)
  • Child/Youth Musician: whatever your instrument and musical style, produce a two minute original musical piece, recorded and sent on CD

Tom Yendell, Board Member of the MFPA Trust Fund, comments:

‘We’re thrilled to be launching the Unique Art Awards, an exciting initiative to showcase some of the incredible artistic talent that may currently be lying undiscovered.  From painting to poetry, it’s sure to be an amazing platform for our entrants, not just through the Awards themselves but through the travelling exhibition that will take to the road after the winners have been announced.’

Prizes for the top three overall winners are:

  • 1st Place: £1,000 in vouchers and £3,000 for their school/college/university
  • 2nd Place: £500 in vouchers and £2,000 for their school/college/university
  • 3rd Place: £250 in vouchers and £1,000 for their school/college/university
  • An overall winner, selected from all finalists,  will receive a week’s holiday for six people at Flat Space, Ropley
  • There will also be a prize of a school theatre production organised by Happy Days charity organised for (Who? 1st place/Overall winner/School of the Art Teacher Award winner?)
  • Art Teacher Award: £2,000 in vouchers, or equivalent for other department winners

In recognition of the incredible work done by teachers in the arts in special education, there will also be an additional award highlighting excellence in this field, including art, drama and music. Schools and colleges are invited to nominate their teachers for the Art Teacher Award by sending a written paper (no more than 1500 words) describing what makes their teacher so special, how they go ‘above and beyond’ their normal duties and why they deserve the award.

Entries to all categories will be open from 10 April to 31 July 2016. Finalists will be invited to attend an Awards Ceremony in London on Monday 10 October 2016, after which an exhibition of the works created for the competition will go on show. For more information please visit www.uniqueartawards.uk.