Kingston Arts Council

Kingston Prize Exhibition

Kingston Prize Exhibition

Kingston Prize Exhibition

Our Programs and Services The Kingston Prize

The Kingston Prize is a biennial national competition for contemporary portraits of Canadians by Canadian artists, with an exhibition of 30 finalists chosen by a distinguished jury of three nationally recognized experts. The main prize is $10,000, presented by the W. Garfield Weston Foundation to the winner chosen by the jury. In addition there are two Honourable Mentions and a People’s Choice Prize based upon ballots submitted by visitors, which has been found to make a visit to the exhibition a highly interactive experience.

The competition began in 2005, with an exhibition at the Thousand Islands Playhouse in Gananoque, near Kingston. The competition attracted 150 entries in 2005, and 209 entries in 2007, from locations across Canada. The Kingston Prize was enthusiastically received by the Kingston community and by the participating artists.

The 2009 exhibition was be held in the newly renovated Grand Theatre in Kingston. Locating the popular Kingston Prize exhibition in Kingston’s premier arts facility has contributed to the overall success of the competition by increasing public awareness of the Prize.

The mission statement for The Kingston Prize is:
To encourage and reward the creation of contemporary portraits by Canadian artists, through a biennial national competition for paintings and drawings.

To be eligible, an entry must be a painting or drawing of a specific Canadian person, produced within 24 months of the closing date, and must be based upon a meeting between artist and subject. The competition is not limited by age or professional status.

The Kingston Prize competition is similar to other portrait prizes held in Australia, Great Britain, the United States and New Zealand. These highly popular events attract block-buster crowds, and the large monetary prizes encourage artists to develop new approaches to portraiture free of the restrictions of portrait commissions.

The Kingston Prize is organized through the Kingston Arts Council.

The Kingston Prize website contains the rules and the entry form, as well as a gallery of previous finalists.

Co-founders: Kaaren and Julian Brown.
Artistic Director: Lorraine Pierce-Hull.
Enquiries: 613-544-6329 or [email protected]

PLEASE NOTE that if you are sending your submission by courier please send it to:

The Kingston Prize, 184 Clergy Street East, Kingston Ontario, K7K 3S7