Surrey Artist of The Year-Update

Lucy Dorothy Nichols wins
the Surrey Artist of the Year 2023

Many congratulations to Lucy Dorothy Nichols, the Surrey Artist of the Year 2023.

Lucy was the favourite of the public vote and the judging panel that consisted of Cllr Alan Earwaker, The Mayor of Farnham, Caitlin Heffernan, Surrey Artists Open Studios, Pippa Hufton, Farnham World Craft Town, and Carol Cordrey, The Farnham, Woking, Guildford and Surrey Downs Magazines, our media partner.

The public cast their vote – we had 472 votes and three of the top scoring artists were presented to the panel of judges.

Lucy is a paper and textile artist, creating marvellously magical paper sculptures with a playful feel and a strong sense of narrative. The two paper sculptures exhibited are from Lucy’s paper bird series. ‘Rush Hour in the Skies’ follows two groups of birds as they fly across the sky on their way to work and to drop off their young at school. The paper sculpture ‘The Bird Hotel in the Sky’, in contrast to this, is a calm haven for those birds that get a little tired as they fly across the Atlantic on their quest to find sunnier climes.

View her entries here:…/lucy-dorothy-nichols/paper

The runner ups were painter Sonya Vine and photographer Sue Roche.

The winner receives a bursary of £1,000, a solo show at the New Ashgate Gallery and a complementary Winner’s Stand at the Surrey Art Fair as well as a £100 Loxley voucher. The runner ups received £25 Loxley vouchers.

The competition is organised by New Ashgate Gallery in partnership with the Surrey Artists Open Studios. It is supported by the Surrey Art Fair and Loxley Arts.

With such an eclectic and talented mix of local artists, the Guildford, Farnham, Woking & Surrey Downs Magazines are the official media sponsor of Surrey Artist of the Year.

Quotes from the judges, winning artist and the director at New Ashgate Gallery:

I am absolutely thrilled to receive this award, taking part in Surrey Artists Open Studios over the Summer was such an enjoyable experience. I’m looking forward to a busy year ahead and can’t wait to get back in the studio to start work on some new paper sculptures for my solo show at the New Ashgate next year. How exciting!(Lucy Dorothy Nichols, The Surrey Artist of the Year 2023)

It was an absolute joy to see our artists employ a really broad range of materials and styles to such great effect! Sonya Vine’s paintings captured the play of light on water so well that her waves looked inviting in one scene and threatening in another. Sue Roche took photography to another level through her skilful manipulation of colour, scale and printing techniques that encompassed both intense realism and Impressionism. The worthy winner was Lucy Dorothy Nichols in whose hands the upcycling of paper and card had become a captivating art form that delighted as much as it impressed!
(Carol Cordrey for The Farnham, Woking, Guildford and Surrey Downs Magazines)

The Surrey Artist of the Year competition raises the profile of Surrey based artists as well as providing them with professional development and support to build an audience for their work. Our partnership with the New Ashgate Gallery provides a highly valued opportunity for artists to work with a contemporary art and craft gallery to develop their practice and promote their work.  It’s always fantastic to see the quality of artwork on display each year. This year was no exception and Lucy Dorothy Nicholls was an outstanding winner who surprised and delighted the judges. A huge thank you to all the artists, the public for their votes and to The New Ashgate Gallery and Surrey Art Fairs.
(Caitlin Heffernan, Programme Manager, Surrey Artists Open Studios.)

The New Ashgate Gallery is crucial to Farnham’s status as a World Craft Town, and hosting Surry Artist of the Year is a wonderful opportunity to showcase the breadth of talent that exists across the whole area. (Pippa Hufton, Farnham World Craft Town Coordinator)

The Surrey Artists of the Year invites the public to become a curator and vote for their favourite artist. It is a wonderful way to support your local talent! (Dr Outi Remes, Gallery Director, New Ashgate Gallery.)