London Art Reviews

Magazine of art press and reviews from London

Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012 calls for entries at the National Portrait Gallery.

“Harriet and Gentleman Jack” (2010) by Jooney Woodward © Jooney Woodward

Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012 calls for entries at the National Portrait Gallery.

David Franchi – 31st May 2012

“It provides an important platform for portrait photographers of all ages”

The “Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize” returns to the National Portrait Gallery for the 2012 edition, with the opening of the ‘Call for Entries’ and a New Commission.

The National Portrait Gallery announced the Call for Entries for the “Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012”, a major international photographic award. Entry forms are now available and the closing date for entries is 9th July 2012.

The “Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012” is open to all photographers over the age of 18. It provides an important platform for portrait photographers of all ages including professionals, gifted amateurs and students.

From the applications around sixty selected works will be displayed. The winner of the “Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012” will receive £12,000, and in addition the judges, at their discretion, will award one or more cash prizes to the shortlisted photographers. The exhibition will run at the National Portrait Gallery, London, from 8th November 2012 until the 17th February 2013.

New for this year, the “John Kobal New Work Award”, will be awarded to a photographer under the age of 30 selected for the exhibition. The winning photographer will receive a cash prize of £4,000 to include undertaking a commission from the National Portrait Gallery to photograph a sitter connected with the UK film industry. John Kobal (1940-1991) was a collector and author who worked on Hollywood legend photography. His archive was the subject of an exhibition, Glamour of the Gods, at the National Portrait Gallery in 2011. The John Kobal Foundation was formed before Kobal’s death, and it continues to encourage the work of emerging photographers.

Last year the “Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize” attracted nearly 6,000 entries and was won by Jooney Woodward for her portrait ‘Gentleman Jack’. Prizes were also awarded to Jill Wooster, Dona Schwartz, Jasper Clarke and David Knight.

Taylor Wessing, the sponsor of the event, is a leading International law firm. Tim Eyles, Managing Partner of Taylor Wessing says: ‘Each year the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize brings together a collection of portraits that provide insight, inspire questions and catalyse debates. The multifarious nature of the entries and the lives and cultures that they represent makes the Prize both relevant and thought provoking. That provocation is one of the reasons why Taylor Wessing has always been supportive of the arts: in generating a reaction from the viewer, art is a great medium through which to encourage innovation and thus the development of creative talent. We look forward to seeing what will inevitably be another challenging and inspiring collection of entries this year.’

Simon Crocker, Chairman of The John Kobal Foundation says: ‘We are delighted to continue our association with the Gallery and the Portrait Prize. This new award reflects the late John Kobal’s combined passions for cinema and photography which we continue to pursue’.

A 72 page catalogue (RRP £15) featuring all the selected photographs will accompany the exhibition.

Call for entries information may be downloaded at or by sending a stamped addressed A4 envelope to: Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012, National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place, London, WC2H OHE.

More info at

At the National Portrait Gallery, St. Martin’s Place, London.

Opened until 9th July 2012.


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