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The Venue


RDS Visual Art Awards

The RDS Visual Art Awards provides a platform for graduating artists as they transition from student into early professional career. It does this by curating an exhibition of some Ireland's  best visual art graduates each October and offering a prize fund of €30,000. Irish performance artist Amanda Coogan, will curate the show in 2018, which will run from October 23 to 29 in the RDS Concert Hall, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.

Congratulations to all the longlisted artists for this year's 2018 RDS Visual Art Awards. It is a real achievement to be picked out by professional curators as a stand out piece in your end-of-degree show.


Selection Process
A team of independent professional curators view the end-of-year BA & MA degree shows in selected colleges around the country. During their visits they longlist graduating artists, who are then invited to apply for the RDS Visual Art Awards. A panel of five judges, nominated by the RDS, RHA, IMMA and National Gallery of Ireland, select artists from these applications for inclusion in a curated exhibition in the RDS Concert Hall.

Irish final year BA and MA students enrolled in overseas art colleges are also eligible to apply as are those graduating from visual art degrees in colleges not on the list below. Students whose end of year show falls outside of the traditional summer period can also apply and more details are available in the Rules of Entry.


2017 RDS Visual Art Awards Winners

In 2018 the selected artists will work with a professional artist/curator and have the opportunity to win a share of the €30,000 prize fund. The RDS Visual Art Awards judging panel selects the winners of the €10,000 RDS Taylor Art Award, the €5,000 R.C. Lewis-Crosby Award and in 2018 a new cash award of €2,500. Also on offer is a three-month residency award (summer 2019) in partnership with the Centre Culturel Irlandais (CCI) in Paris. The Director of CCI will select the winner from the exhibitors who applied for the residency on their online application form. This award is sponsored by Mason Hayes & Curran who have a long history of supporting Irish artists.

A new award this year is the RHA Graduate Studio Award which gives the winner access to a studio for one year in the RHA, Ely Place, Dublin 2. They will also have access to all classes and masterclasses in the RHA School for the duration of the prize (December 2018 to December 2019). This award is valued at €5,000 and comes with a cash stipend of €2,500 (sponsored by the RDS). The winner of this award will be selected by the RHA School Principal in consultation with the RHA Director and Senior Curator.

Each exhibiting artist receives a stipend of €500 to assist with any exhibition related expenses.


For further information please contact:

Dara O'Leary
RDS Arts Programme Manager
Dublin 4
Tel: +353 (0) 1 240 7255
Email: arts@rds.ie

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