Winners announced for 2014 BP Fine Art and Design Awards as Gray's Degree Show gets underway

The 2014 Gray’s School of Art Degree Show got underway in style with the presentation of this year’s highly sought after BP Design and Fine Art Awards on June 20.

The Degree Show, an annual highlight of Aberdeen’s cultural calendar, has been sponsored by BP for the eleventh year and showcases work by almost 150 final year undergraduates spanning fashion and textiles, ceramics and jewellery, product design, graphics, digital media, visual communication, painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography and electronic media.

The 2014 BP Design Award was won by Chris Preiner (30), from Aberdeen, after his animation shorts caught the judges’ attention. The Design for Digital Media student, who worked alongside charity This Child Here, juxtaposed humour with a hard hitting message in order to highlight the plight of orphans and street children in the Ukraine, to powerful effect.

Chris will receive the specially commissioned BP Design Award trophy together with a cheque for £500.

The BP Fine Art Award was won by Catherine Ross (22), from Westhill, for her impressive paintings which explore the pull of the remote north. Born in the rural town of Yellowknife in northwest Canada before relocating with her family to Scotland, Catherine’s work over the past two years has been driven by an attempt to capture the anchored feelings that she has towards her birthplace.

She will receive the BP Fine Art Award trophy together with a cheque for £500.

In addition to the main prizes, Printmaking student Caitlin Hynes was highly commended in the BP Fine Art category, and Textiles and Surface Design student Rachel Goldie, also highly commended in the BP Design Award. Both students will receive a cheque for £250.

Trevor Garlick, Regional President, BP North Sea, said: ”Awarding these prizes is always an extremely interesting and enjoyable task and the standard of the work presented to us this year was incredibly high.

“We felt Chris’ work was very clever and beautifully executed, while Catherine’s paintings, so personal to her, are also hugely engaging to others and show a great maturity for someone of her age.”

He added: “BP is delighted to be celebrating 11 years of sponsorship of the Gray’s School of Art Degree Show which is always a much anticipated event in the north east’s cultural calendar.”

Professor Paul Harris, Head of Gray’s School of Art said: “As ever, we are very grateful to BP for their continued support of the Degree Show, which underlines the important relationship between art, design and industry which exists in Aberdeen.

“The BP Awards for both Fine Art and Design are highly cherished accolades representing creative excellence in any arena and are always very much sought after by our graduating students."

He added: "The Degree Show is always the highlight of our year at Gray’s, and with BP’s support over the past decade, it has undoubtedly established itself as one of the hottest tickets in town. Our students consistently produce work across a whole range of disciplines which challenges, intrigues and engages audiences, and 2014 is no exception.

“The theme of this year’s Show is ‘Open Your Eyes’  as we want to encourage people who perhaps wouldn’t normally come along to sit up and take notice of what our students are doing, to come into the School and see for themselves the wealth of talent that exists within the city.” 

Visitors to the Degree Show will see an exhibition that reflects the very best of contemporary practice involving the integration of digital technologies alongside photography, animation, time-based and interactive media co-existing and complementing high quality work produced through the traditional studio processes that Gray’s is renowned for.

The Gray's School of Art Degree Show runs until Saturday, June 28.

Release by
Jenny RushCommunications Officer | Design and Technology