The Gilbert Bayes Award for early career sculptors is given annually by the Society to a small group of outstandingly talented sculptors.

Formerly known as the Bursary Award (until 2018), previous winners include Alex Chinneck, Tessa Farmer and William Mackrell.

The award provides vital support during what can be a difficult transition from study to professional practice. Sculptors of any age or nationality can apply, with or without formal training and working in any style of media. 

This award is generously supported by the Gilbert Bayes Charitable Trust

Announcing our 2020 winners: Sasha Bowles, Vanessa da Silva, Katharina Fitz, Sally Hackett, Sarah Howe, Eugene Macki, Emily Motto, Mitchell Vowles, Jessica Wetherly and Chen Winner

About the prize

The Gilbert Bayes Award for early career sculptors is a prestigious prize which supports the transition to professional practice and raises industry profile.

Award winners receive a year’s worth of professional development, including talks from guest speakers such as commercial galleries, art charities, private collections as well as industry experts.

The winners are showcased through a group exhibition at Dora House and benefit from promotion via this web site as well as on our social channels. They also receive free membership of the Society for a year with the opportunity to take half price membership the following year. Please note that this award does not include a cash prize.

In addition, sculpture manufacturer Benson Sedgwick Engineering offers an informal residency to selected member/s of the winning cohort. In 2019, Sam Baker and Jack West will be provided with bench space in the workshop and access to Benson Sedgwick staff and materials. They will develop the artworks agreed in their original proposals for the residency and commit to learning new metalworking skills.


How to apply

Applications are welcome from early career artists of any age and nationality, with or without formal training, though not in formal education. All styles of media are considered, including installation, site specific, performance, conceptual and video work. A minimum of four years exhibiting experience is expected. Applicants, based in the UK and internationally, must be committed to embracing all aspects of the Award and actively participate in all Award events.

Please note that the Society is unable to contribute financially towards artist expenses, travel costs or any costs associated with the group show exhibition.

Applications for the 2020 Gilbert Bayes Award are now closed and will re-open in autumn 2020. To find out when applications for this award and other opportunities are open, please subscribe to our monthly Shape & Form enewsletter here