Ashford College are delighted to announce that one of their students has won the Turner Contemporary Further Education Prize, whilst another was highly commended. Jessica Handley, studying a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Art & Design (Photography), won the coveted first prize in the Further Education category in Portfolio, the gallery’s annual art competition. The winners were announced on 26th April.
Entrants were asked to submit artwork around the theme of ‘Making a Change’ and Jessica’s photo, entitled ‘Beauty of Decay’, showing a plastic bottle discarded amongst the nettles, moss and dead leaves of a woodland floor, seeks to “change the expectation of beauty and show the impact decay has on the environment.” Her work will be exhibited alongside the other category winners in the central gallery over the summer.
The work of another Ashford College student, Leanne Lewis, was highly commended in the same category. Her triptych, titled “Positivity Over Negativity”, features a young person covered in a deluge of post-it notes bearing both encouraging and discouraging messages and shows, in her own words “that if you change your outlook on life and not care, you can become a happier, carefree and stronger person.”
Ashford College’s Team Leader in Art & Design, Rob Forsyth, commented: “It’s fantastic that both the winning and highly commended submissions in the Further Education category were from students in the same class. This prestigious award is an indicator of the burgeoning talent of these two young photographers, whilst also acknowledging the fantastic tuition and direction provided by their lecturer and course manager.”
The students’ lecturer, Marc Christmas, added: “Congratulations to Jessica and Leanne for winning these awards with such fantastic work. It is acknowledgement of their passion for photography. They have shown great enthusiasm, creativity and dedication throughout the first year and, of course, they are both talented photographers. I look forward to working with them and their peers as they progress to the second year of their course.”
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