Wildlife Artist of the Year entries open

The hunt is on for the world’s Wildlife Artist of the Year, as David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF) officially opens its prestigious annual art competition for 2020.

With a top prize of £10,000 and the chance to exhibit in a top London location, the contest attracts hundreds of entries from artists across the globe. Now in its 13th year, the exhibition and related sale has become an eagerly awaited highlight of the art calendar for both artists and art buyers.The main competition is open to amateur and professional artists aged 17 and over in all genres (excluding photography and digital painting) and offers numerous categories and prizes.

Human Impact – youth category

Continuing this year is the ‘Human Impact’ category, a special class open to artists aged 16-22. We are inviting them to express their concern about the impact human beings have on the planet through their artwork. The category was introduced to great reception last year and we are excited to see what is submitted this year. Costing only £10 to enter, this category is perfect for art students and up-and-coming artists.

Endangered: Wildlife in Motion – brand new category

This year we are also thrilled to be announcing a new category for this year, which will allow a medium that Wildlife Artist of the Year has never accepted before. ‘Endangered: Wildlife in Motion’ invites filmmakers and animators to submit short films which capture the reality that endangered creatures face; whether telling a story through script, using footage captured from the wild or a combination of both, we welcome creative short films which successfully communicate the urgent extinction crisis.

“We are always hugely impressed by the incredibly high standard of artwork entered into Wildlife Artist of the Year every year,” said DSWF’s CEO Karen Botha. “The resulting exhibition provides an important showcase for artists around the world to celebrate endangered species and highlight the critical problems they face.

“Our Founder David Shepherd was passionate about encouraging the use of art to communicate the need to care about conservation, and we are excited to see the messages this new category will bring. Alongside continuing the youth category, we felt we were continuing his legacy.”

Each year the competition’s top £10,000 prize has been generously supported by a private donor. Along with the £1,000 runner-up and £500 category prizes, the Wildlife Artist of the Year offers artists around the world the chance to win a prestigious accolade.

The top prize winner in 2019 was Welsh artist Stephen Rew, with his striking bronze sculpture of an octopus called ‘Writhe’.

His incredible and unique piece formed part of an exquisite exhibition of more than 150 shortlisted competition entries in London last May.

The eight categories for Wildlife Artist of the Year 2020 are:

  • Animal Behaviour
  • Earth’s Wild Beauty
  • Human Impact (16-22yrs)
  • Into the Blue
  • Urban Wildlife
  • Facing Extinction
  • Wings
  • Endangered Wildlife in Motion

The annual Wildlife Artist of the Year competition was established by the late, great wildlife artist David Shepherd CBE FRSA (1931 – 2017). The event embodies David’s vision for ‘The Art of Survival’ – using art for wildlife conservation.

Since the competition began in 2007, it has attracted more than 10,000 entries and raised more than £1.2m to fund DSWF’s vital work to fight wildlife crime, protect endangered species and engage with communities on the ground across Africa and Asia.

Competition entry costs £25 per artwork, with a concessionary rate of £10 for entry in the Human Impact category. Entries are open until Monday 10 February 2020. For more details on all the categories, how to enter and full terms and conditions, click here.