Smirnoff Winter Pride Art Awards 2014

Besi Besemar November 10, 2014

The second Smirnoff Winter Pride Art Awards launches at Tobacco Dock in East London on Saturday, November 15, 2014.

Brendan Courtney
Brendan Courtney

IRISH BROADCASTING personality Brendan Courtney will host the Awards Ceremony and a spectacular exhibition of artworks from a group of international artists and the Art Award’s Finalists, as well as live performances introducing the top talent from this year’s Performance Awards.

Stephen Fry
Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry, winner of the inaugural Smirnoff Winter Pride Luminary of the Year, said: “Winter Pride is a unique opportunity for up-and-coming artists and performers to showcase their creativity at a key LGBT artistic and cultural event – creative ventures of this kind are all-important for both the arts and LGBT communities.”

More than 40 artists and performers, including art and design students from Middlesex University, will exhibit and perform. A judging panel of arts and media professionals comprising celebrity sculptor Frances Segelman, “Queen of Harps” Catrin Finch, and Gallery director Andrew Lacey have selected 7 Finalists. Two of these will be awarded £1,000 prize money each and the chance to exhibit with a group of international artists at Lacey Contemporary Gallery from November 18-29 2014.

Simon Tarrant, Director of the Winter Pride Art Awards, said: “Representation is what all emerging artists are looking for and the Winter Pride Art Awards offers not only an incredible opportunity to exhibit at an international art festival but alongside leading artists at a top London gallery.”

Rory O'Neill, also known as Panti
Rory O’Neill, also known as Panti

As part of the Awards, Winter Pride will be presenting a Humanitarian Award to drag queen and gay rights activist Panti aka Rory O’Neill, who has made a significant contribution to the LGBT rights movement and society in general. The Winter Pride team was moved and inspired by Panti’s ‘Noble Call’ at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, believing that emotive speeches of this kind help to change attitudes towards the LGBT community.

Winter Pride is also a fundraising platform that helps aid minority charities and this year is supporting the Albert Kennedy Trust, which supports lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) homeless young people in crisis.

Winter Pride founder Rebecca Paisis, added: “We at Winter Pride passionately believe that the arts have the power to transform lives directly. Art inspires individuals in many ways, fuelling the imagination and allowing people to realise their potential.”

Following the Winter Pride Art Awards Ceremony a Frost Festival will be unveiled in the vast, vaulted Great Gallery at Tobacco Dock attended by personalities from the world of arts. Barry Lategan, the photographer who discovered Twiggy, will be photographing unisex visual and performance artist XXXora who says, “I will be exhibiting a performance piece called The Binary Heard, which will involve one black sheep and one white sheep each having their wool cut into a box by Europe’s leading creative groomer Su Eld Weaver.”

Other celebrity VIPs include Lucian Freud’s muse and model Sue Tilley, X Factor’s Lucy Spraggan and international hair and make-up artist Gary Cockerill.

To buy tickets for the Art Awards and Frost Festival, click here:

For more information about Winter Pride, click here: