Winners announced for this year’s Discover ARTiculation

Students from Campsmount Academy in Doncaster and St Paul’s Girls School, London, have won this year’s Discover ARTiculation competition, the final of which took place earlier this month on 12 July.


The competition builds on the success of the ARTiculation Prize for sixth formers (held annually at Clare College, University of Cambridge). It is organised by the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies and Educational Engagement team at the University of Leeds, alongside partners, the Roche Court Educational Trust and the Devonshire Educational Trust.

Thirty five GCSE students from schools across the UK submitted a short film of themselves speaking about a work of art, an artefact or a piece of architecture of their choice. Adjudicators from the University of Leeds and the Association of Art Historians viewed each film received, looking at content, structure, delivery and the speaker’s original approach and unique potential.

Six students from five different schools across England were chosen from the wide range of entries. They each delivered seven minute presentations at the final on Wednesday 12 July at the University of Leeds.

Their presentations were judged by Kate Brindley, Director of Collections and Exhibitions at Chatsworth House and alumna of the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies. Kate commented on the high standard of all six presentations but only two finalists could be selected for the first prize awards: one for overall presentation skills and one for overall research skills.

First prize for presentation went to Rebecca Lingard from Campsmount Academy in Doncaster. Rebecca introduced the audience to the artist Hélène Delamaire and her painting Honest Intimacy. She gave a very personal interpretation of Delamaire’s artwork, deconstructing it and asking us to consider it in depth. Rebecca was commended for originality of thought and an excellent presentation full of personality, with a deep look at the subject matter and raising challenging questions around identity.

Winners of Discover ARTiculation 2017 with Kate Brindley and Abigail Harrison MooreThe winner for research skills was Fox White from St Paul’s Girls School, London. Fox took the audience on a journey in the dark to consider Black Paintings by Ad Reinhardt. Kate Brindley commended Fox for the quality, depth, rigour and rationality of her research, and commented on how putting the audience quite literally in the dark by putting out the lights to look at the painting was a brave thing to do.

Kate also awarded a runner up prize to Giada Alfi, a student from Shirebrook Academy, Mansfield, who included an element of performance in her presentation on Killing Stalking by manhwa artist Koogi.

Finalists also included Alanis Fell from Harrow Way School who questioned our current perspective on art by challenging the audience to consider ‘what is a portrait?’ by taking as her chosen artwork Still Life with Fruit & Parrot by Frida Kahlo.

Two finalists hailed from Abbey Grange Academy in Leeds ― Ananya Mathai and Thomas Kear. Ananya explored Bangalore Street Scene by Dominique Amendola, relating the painting to her own experiences and comparing it to works by other artists such as Renoir and contemporary scenes of London street life.

Thomas took Frank Lloyd Wright’s Guggenheim Museum in New York and considered how the architect’s upbringing influenced his work, weaving in how seeing the building with his own eyes has been a large part of why it means so much to him.

Francesca Wilson, Roche Court Educational Trust, said:

“It has been fantastic to see how Discover ARTiculation has developed over the past two years.

“The six bold young speakers who presented in the final gave everyone in the audience a lesson in excellent communication and presentations skills and demonstrated how much can be achieved with passion for a subject and good research.

“All the speakers, with the support of their teachers and the University of Leeds, have taken on a challenge which we know from experience will bolster their confidence and have a resounding impact on all areas of their education and development.

“ARTiculation was established by the Roche Court Educational Trust to give young people a platform to communicate their ideas and develop real life skills and it is inspiring to see students at this age take up the challenge with such spirit.”

Ellie Johnson from the Educational Engagement team in the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures said:

“We received entries for Discover ARTiculation from a wide range of schools from all over the country. The number of students entering the competition has increased since 2016, and we hope this will continue to grow year on year. One local school from Leeds ―Abbey Grange Academy ― entered their whole art class this year and two of their students made it to the final.”

Teaching staff within the schools taking part this year were extremely positive about the overall experience for their students. Paul McGinty, an art teacher at Abbey Grange Academy, said:

“If I’m totally honest we entered the competition not really knowing much about the actual event. However, seeing two of our Year 9 students talk so eloquently about their chosen artwork to a room of art enthusiasts in a University lecture theatre was one of the proudest moments in my career.