£10,000 Cash Art Prize Launched By Cass Art

A new art prize set up by leading art retailer Cass Art has launched and is inviting artists across the UK and Ireland – from professional artists, teachers, students & amateur enthusiasts – to submit their work.

The Cass Art Prize is a continuation of Cass Art’s long-standing mission to support artists and encourage them to realise their creative talents. An expert judging panel will decide the winning artworks, with a main cash prize of £10,000 and a stand at Saatchi Art’s The Other Art Fair, plus a prestigious London exhibition awarded to the winners and selected artists. The overall additional prize pot is worth £5,000 and The Contemporary Art Academy is offering £900 of online courses and £100 of art materials in the form of a development award.

“Let’s Fill This Town With Artists”

Cass Art’s manifesto of ‘Let’s fill this town with artists’ formalised the vision of Mark Cass, Founder and CEO of Cass Art, to support artists and make art available to the widest possible audience. The Cass Art Prize embodies this ambition: everyone is welcome and there is a prize category for different ability and career stage. There are additional categories specifically for oil, watercolour, acrylic, drawing and sketching, 3D artwork, mixed media and printmaking to ensure a wide range of art is represented.

Mark Cass and the Cass Art Prize Judges. L-R Curtis Holder, Sinta Tantra, Justin Mortimer, Mark Cass, Pippy Houldsworth, Kathleen Soriano, Robert Diament.

Cass Art Prize Judging Panel

Cass Art has lined up a respected panel of judges with extensive knowledge across the art industry: Curtis Holder, a figurative British artist and previous winner of Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year, acclaimed painter and previous winner of the National Portrait Gallery’s BP Portrait Award Justin Mortimer, curator and judge on Sky Arts’ popular Artist of the Year series Kathleen Soriano, gallery owner Pippy Houldsworth, Partner at Carl Freedman Gallery and Counter Editions and TalkArt co-host Robert Diament, founder of Saatchi Art’s The Other Art Fair Ryan Stanier and artist Sinta Tantra.

There will be a special exhibition in London to showcase the exceptional work created by the Cass Art community, from 7-16 November 2024 at Copeland Gallery, Peckham.

The Cass Art Prize continues a family legacy of supporting artists for more than 120 years. Mark’s great-great uncles Paul and Bruno Cass(irer) made their names in the late 1890s as Europe’s preeminent art dealers, largely responsible for championing French impressionists such as Monet, Cezanne and Van Gogh.* The Cassirers fled Nazi Germany in the 1930s, shortening their name to Cass.

Wilfred Cass

This family tradition of entrepreneurship and close relationships with the art world continued through the generations as Wilfred Cass, Mark’s father, later ran Reeves, the world’s oldest paint manufacturer. In addition, Wilfred launched the Cass Sculpture Foundation, a British charity that commissioned more than 450 sculptures from emerging artists over 25 years as well as enabling the first three commissions on the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square. The Cass Art Prize is generously supported by Wilfred’s Estate and its inaugural edition in 2024 marks what would have been Wilfred’s 100th birthday.

Cass was among the first to commission Thomas Heatherwick, designer and founder of Heatherwick Studio, who created a pavilion at the sculpture park in 1992.  “When I was 22 years old I was lucky to meet Wilfred Cass at my degree show in London. As an extraordinary patron to so many young creative people, Wilfred didn’t simply buy my pieces, but instead went on to become a friend and support me to create new work that might otherwise never have had the chance to happen. At such a fragile moment in my life this was exactly the kind of confidence-giving help that I needed, to smooth the transition into the scary and very real professional world.

“I’m now so proud to know that, even when Wilfred himself isn’t around anymore to personally support and help, his legacy continues in the form of this award, as precious encouragement to new generations of young people.”

Mark Cass, Founder and CEO of Cass Art said: ‘My family has a long and proud history of supporting artists and, continuing this legacy, we are delighted to launch the Cass Art Prize. Our mission is to fill every town with artists, from professionals to beginners, and there truly is something for everyone with this prize. We look forward to seeing and showcasing the incredible talent across the Cass Art and SAA communities.’

Everyone is encouraged to enter the Cass Art Prize 2024. Submissions open from 12 March – 20 May 2024. Entry fees are £10 for 1 entry, £16 for 2 entries or £22 for 3 entries. Students and Art Educators get £2 off these fees; £8 for 1 entry, £14 for 2 entries or £20 for 3 entries. For more information on how to enter visit www.cassart.co.uk/thecassartprize