Annual Open Exhibition Artist Information 2018

Pre-Selection results are now available. To view your results, log in to your OESS account here and enter your email address and password. Your results will then show at the bottom of the page. If you cannot access your OESS account, please email

If one or more of your works has been Pre-Selected:

1. You will need to print labels to attach to your work/s in order to deliver them to the RWA for Final Selection. Labels are available to download at the bottom of the results page, along with a Pre-Selected form for your records. 

  • Labels should be printed on thin white card and securely attached to the work with a thin piece of string, preferably with staples or strong tape. Please do not use thick cord, rope or twine as this makes it difficult to tuck the label behind the work once it has been hung.
  • The string should be long enough to hang in front of the work when wall or plinth-mounted.
  • The artists’ name, address and title of work should also be written clearly on the back of the work.
  • The top of abstract works should be clearly marked on the back of the work.

2. You will then need to deliver your work on either Monday 17 September (Academicians only), Tuesday 18 or Wednesday 19 September, 10am – 5pm. 

  • Works should arrive unwrapped. If you are delivering your work in person there will be space to unwrap your work on delivery. Packaging must then be removed from the RWA by the artist.
  • Fragile work may remain wrapped in a way that does not obscure the image during selection.
  • A colleague or friend may deliver works on your behalf with your written permission.

3. If you are unable to deliver your works in person, you can book regional transport from London, Birmingham, Exeter and Penzance. 

  • Regional transport is now closed for booking.
  • We will re-open transport for the return leg at the end of the exhibition.

Final Selection results will be available at 1pm on Friday 28 September.


What is the Annual Open?

The Royal West of England Academy holds an Annual Open Exhibition, now in its 166th year. Anyone can enter their work for this mixed discipline show - previous years have included painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, film, sculpture and illustration, and attracted entries from artists across the UK and beyond. All work is for sale and the exhibition attracts art-lovers and art-buyers from far and wide.

A selection panel assesses every entry and last year 624 works by 421 artists made it into the final exhibition. All work is for sale, and the exhibition attracts art-lovers and art-buyers from far and wide. Submissions are welcome from unknown, emerging and established artists, including RWA Academicians.

2018's Selection Panel includes Stewart Geddes PRWA, Stephen Jacobson VPRWA, Fiona Robinson RWA, Elizabeth Turrell RWA and Chris Dunseath RWA, alongside gallery director, curator and artist Zavier EllisLaura Gascoigne, art writer and critic and Curator of the Jerwood Collection Lara Wardle.

We're also delighted to have Jock McFadyen RA and Carol Robertson as this year's Invited Artists.

Awards and Prizes

Prizes include The Academy Prize of £1000, The Watercolour Prize (First Place £250, Second Place £150), The Painting Prize of £250, sponsored by Derek Balmer PPRWA, The Evolver Wessex Cover and Artist Awards, The Sculpture Prize sponsored by Pangolin Editions, The Creativity Award sponsored by Niche Frames, Bristol and The arTag Award (a Blue arTag Membership and an Orange arTag Membership). See attached document below for more information.

Dates to Remember

  • Monday 2 July, midday - Tuesday 21 August, 5pm: Submissions open
  • Friday 31 August, 1pm: Pre-selection results live
  • Monday 17 September, 10am - 5pm: Hand in day (Academicians only)
  • Tuesday 18 and Wednesday 19 September, 10am - 5pm: Hand in day (general public)
  • Friday 28 September, 1pm: Final results live
  • Tuesday 2 and Wednesday 3 October 10am - 5pm: Collection unselected works
  • Friday 5 October, 2 - 5pm: Varnishing Day Lunch
  • Saturday 6 October, 3 - 6pm: Private View
  • 7 October - 25 November: Exhibition open
  • Friday 19 and Saturday 20 October, 10am - 5pm: Collection unselected works
  • Friday 30 November and Saturday 1 December: Collection all works
  • Sunday 16, 11.30 - 4pm and Monday 17 December, 10am - 5pm: Collection all works
  • Friday 11 and Saturday 12 January 2019, 10am - 5pm: Collection all works



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