The Aims of the Award are to:

  • give recognition to talented individuals and groups at the beginning of their career in the creative arts, craft and design
  • offer tailored business mentoring/business skills experience to the Award winner, so that their business is more efficient and effective in the future

The Award is open to individuals or groups who:

  • are currently studying in the United Kingdom at specialist schools, further education colleges and universities
  • have completed a further education course or graduated (up to Masters level) within the last 3 years.

Work may be in any medium, e.g. wood, metal, glass, ceramics, polymer, textiles, painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, film, video, creative writing, illustration.

What is the Award?

The Award has been established as a 20-year project, and will operate as an annual arts, craft and design competition, in which the winner will receive a commission to create their winning design.

For 2017, the commission will be to design and make a storage cabinet/unit to hold Richard Seager’s sheet music collection. From 2018 onwards, the client will be either a charity or organisation whose profile would benefit from the additional publicity which the Award will generate, and which feels that the commissioned work would be of lasting benefit for their members and the public. Each year, Valerie Seager will choose the beneficiary of the Award. The Selection Panel will then work with them to draw up the commissioning brief, which will be advertised on this website, in specialist magazines and via online arts and crafts websites.

The charity for 2018 will be Butterfly Conservation. This is a charity which Richard Seager supported, and the commission will form part of their 50th anniversary celebrations. They plan to generate significant public awareness throughout the process for their members, the local community, interested individuals and external partnering organisations. Discussions are taking place with potential future partners, which include The Chelsea Flower Show  and Julia’s House Children’s Hospice. In 2021 the Award will partner with the Crafts Council to commemorate their 50 years of supporting and promoting talent in the craft sector.

Shortly after the application deadline, the Selection Panel will draw up a shortlist of candidates they wish to interview. Each shortlisted candidate will be provided with the sum of £100 to undertake additional work on their design prior to interview by members of the Selection Panel.

The winner will be commissioned to create their winning design, which for 2017 should be completed by early August. Information about the shortlisted candidates, their work, details of their designs for the Award, and an example of their work will be included in an exhibition at the GX Gallery in London in August. The completed commissioned piece will form the centrepiece of the display relating to the Richard Seager Annual Arts Award. The winner and shortlisted candidates will be given the opportunity of working with the gallery in staging their work, and attending the private viewing of the exhibition.

Furniture & Cabinetmaking magazine will be showcasing the shortlisted candidates for the Award and announcing the winner in a gallery style feature. In addition, the winner will be given a commission to write their project up as an article for future publication.

A key component of the Award will be the tailored business mentoring and practical business skills experience which will be made available to the winner throughout the making process from members of the Selection Panel. It is intended that this will be of lasting benefit to the winner.