Yes, we accept entries from both individual artists and makers and those working as a collective.  On application, please provide the name of the collective as your artist name.  If you were to be selected as part of the shortlist and go on to win a monetary prize, the amount would have to be shared by the artists' comprising the collective.


The answer lies with John Ruskin himself, who considered the uses of photography to be distinctly limited. Whilst he embraced one early form of 'photography' -- the daguerreotype, which stored images on plates that could not be reproduced -- he was not keen on paper photography which could be endlessly reproduced from negatives. Ruskin valued the daguerreotype as a useful tool for capturing clear images of (often threatened) buildings whose fine architectural details he wanted to record. He sometimes used the images as a source for his own drawings, and encouraged other artists to do the same. Photography was in the early stages of its development when Ruskin was active, and he did not see it as an art form in itself. Although photographers would frame the image, they did not interpret it as an artist would, so the form satisfied the eye but not the hand.

3. I am not a UK National, but I work here, can I apply?

Yes.  The John Ruskin Prize 2019 is open to artists, designers and makers, both amateur and professional, of all nationalities, aged 18 and over, resident, studying or currently making work or with work represented in the UK. 


Yes, we are accepting work in both new and traditional media and work that combines the two.  We aren't accepting 'pure' lens based media: Photography and Film, but we are accepting work that includes photographic elements that has been manipulated or collaged, similarly, we are accepting installation or sculptural work with film / animation elements.

If you make process-led or performative work that is recorded by film or animation these works are also accepted.

5. Can you explain the 2019 theme?

Now in its 5th year, The John Ruskin Prize 2019 aims to uphold Ruskin’s beliefs whilst challenging the nation’s creatives to consider their role as catalysts of change, critics, social and political commentators and material innovators.

Open to a broad range of interpretations, the prize organisers are inviting entries from a range of creative practitioners in response to the theme: ‘Agent of Change’. John Ruskin, an impassioned and influential critic of art, society and life, believed that art has the power to expose universal truths. Ruskin was a writer, artist, social critic, polymath and aesthete who fiercely opposed the social, political and environmental injustices of his day. These injustices – the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots, social and economic uncertainty, rapid environmental change and a complex ever shifting political landscape remain issues that are as pertinent today as they were in Ruskin’s day. The Prize also embraces Ruskin’s polymathic sensibilities, focusing on the strengths of multidisciplinary practice and inviting submissions from creatives whose work defies easy categorisation. In this bicentenary year, the Prize organisers are encouraging submissions that address change through observation, innovation, protest and that force us to see old problems in a new light.

6. I'm not a fine artist, can I still apply?

Yes! The John Ruskin Prize aims to attract entries from a range of artists/ makers who employ a multi-disciplinary approach to their practice or who are inspired by a range of subjects.

7. I would like to enter work that was not made recently, can I still submit?

Yes, work entered can be made recently, be older work or made specifically for the prize.  There are no restrictions with regard to when work was made, it is more important that submitted works consider the theme.