Barclays L’Atelier Art Competition

Barclays L’Atelier Art Competition 2018 (For Young African Visual Artists)

L’Atelier is one of Africa’s most prestigious art competitions. It rewards young visual artists aged 21 to 35 with the opportunity to develop their talents abroad. A look through the list of previous winners will testify to this.

Building on the platform created over the past two years, the competition is continuing to expand across Africa, opening in a number of countries, where Barclays Africa has a presence. Artists who are permanent residents of and residing in South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Namibia, Mozambique, Mauritius or Seychelles are invited to enter.

The L’Atelier art competition is run in conjunction with our partner, the South African National Association for the Visual Arts (SANAVA).

Barclays L’Atelier Eligibility

  • The competition is open to all artists who are not younger than 21 and not older than 35 on 27 April 2018. In the case of art students, only students in their final year of study who meet the age requirements may participate.
  • All prize winners are required to take up the prize (residency) as per the date mentioned in the entry details.
  • Only artists who are citizens or have been granted permanent residency of South Africa, Kenya, Zambia, Ghana, Botswana, Uganda, Mozambique, Mauritius, Seychelles, Tanzania, Nigeria or Namibia may enter the competition. The prize airfare to Absa Gallery or to a residency award will only be from participating countries.


  • Initial adjudication is done on electronic submission where you may upload up to seven (7) images of your artwork.
  • Those artists whose entries make it in through to the next round will be contacted directly to arrange for the collection of their artwork.
  • It is essential when registering online and uploading your artwork that all fields are completed. Failure not to complete all fields will result in your entry being disqualified.

Barclays L’Atelier Art Competition Prizes

There are five prizes for the Barclays L’Atelier art competition; the first prize, three merit award prizes and Gerard Sekoto Award for the most promising artist. The top 10 finalists will all be placed on a two-day art professionalism course to assist them in managing their careers.

First Prize

  • 6 months in Paris
  • R330 000 and a return ticket to Paris
  • The prize money must be used for a study term of between three and six months in the studio apartment at the Cité Internationale des Arts, purchased specifically for this purpose. The prize money will be made available when the winner leaves for Paris. The date of the residency is January to June 2019.

Merit Award Prize

  • 3 months in Johannesburg
  • Bag Factory Artists Studio
  • One merit award winner will win a prize consisting of a three-month residency in Johannesburg, at the Bag Factory Artists’ Studio, a return flight to Johannesburg and a monthly stipend. The date of the residency is June to August 2019.

Merit Award Prize

  • 2 months in Sylt
  • The Sylt Foundation Residency
  • This prize includes a return flight to Germany and a monthly stipend. The date of the residency is September to October 2019.

Merit Award Prize

  • 1 month in New York
  • The Ampersand Foundation Residency
  • The prize includes a one-month residency at the Ampersand Foundation in New York. You’ll be a Fellow of the Ampersand Foundation and have access to the American Association of Museums (AAM) card that allows free access to most museums in New York City. The prize includes return flights to New York City and a monthly stipend. The date of the residency is January 2019.

Gerard Sekoto Award

  • 3 months in Paris
  • The Alliance Française, the Institut Français Afrique du Sud and the French Embassy are sponsoring the Gerard Sekoto Award for a South African artist who has demonstrated continual improvement in the quality of their entry year-on-year in the L’Atelier competition.
  • This prize consists of a return flight ticket to Paris, three months’ stay in the Cité Internationale des Arts, nationwide touring exhibitions Institut Français Afrique du Sud language lessons. The Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris residencies are made available by SANAVA. The date of the residency is May to July 2019.

How to Apply

Interested in the Barclays L’Atelier Art Competition? Click here to register.

Deadline:  27th April 2018


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