Here’s Everything You Must Know To Apply For The 2020 Kuenyehia Prize For Contemporary Art

Contemporary Art by Ghanaian Artist Cecelia Lamptey-Botchway

The deadline for the 2020 Kuenyehia Prize for Contemporary Art is getting closer.

If you are an artist, then you must consider applying for this.

The 7-year-old art prize has been celebrating artist in Ghana and for 2020, it is settings its sights on the entire West Africa.

If you are an artist from West Africa then this is for you. Below is everything you need to apply for the prize…

For 2020, acceptable submissions include paintings, drawings, sculpture, installations, video installations, illustrations and photographs.
• Submission close: Thursday October 15, at 23:59 hours GMT.
• Announcement of shortlist of ten – Shortlist will be announced on Monday November 16, 2020 by a press release and published on the Prize’s website and social media platforms.

Shortlisted artists will be contacted to send physical work to The Kuenyehia Trust office in Accra. The work must be exhibition-ready (printed/framed/ etc.).
• Physical work making up shortlist should be received by the Kuenyehia Trust for
Contemporary Art, no later than Friday December 11, 2020.
• Announcement of winner – The winner and two runners-up will be announced at the award ceremony scheduled for Friday December 18, 2020. The ceremony is either be held online or in Accra, Ghana.
• Exhibition of top ten entries – There will be an exhibition (online and/or in situ) held for the shortlisted works. The exhibition will be launched the day of the award ceremony and will last for a full month, till Sunday January 17, 2020
• Eligibility: Open to emerging and mid-career artists who are between the ages of 25 and 40 citizens of / and living in West Africa.


For the 2020 Kuenyehia Prize, The prize money sums up to $10,000 as follows:

  • $5,000 going to the winner selected by the Jury,
  • $3,000 going to the first runner-up and
  • $2,000 to the second runner-up as determined by the Jury.
    Of the $5,000 going to the award winner, $2,000 shall be used to purchase art materials for new work (to be paid for directly by the Trustees) and the remaining $3,000 shall be disbursed in twelve equal monthly installments.
  • Given that a key focus of the prize is to ensure the long term success of the prize winner and shortlisted artists, the prize will include vouchers that can be redeemed with selected service providers for a range of personal development, career development, coaching and business development services.

Such services shall include (but not be limited to) training, mentoring, personal coaching and one-on-one consulting with business experts and technical assistance across a wide range of business disciplines including enterprise formation/legal/intellectual property, finance and accounting, brand management (including personal branding) and public relations.

The idea is to provide winning artists with a toolkit to enable them create value out of their work for the rest of their careers and to build brands that will ensure they command premium prices for their work should they be commercially minded. Artists whose objectives are not commercial can avail themselves of career-related and educational services.

In addition, winning and shortlisted artists will be paired with volunteer mentor artist(s)/art teachers of their choice and encouraged to produce further work.

Entry Specifications/Requirements

To be considered for the prize, interested eligible artists shall upload high-resolution jpegs/PNG of their work online. Although artists will be judged on 1 (one) participating work, they shall be required – in addition to the work which is to be considered for the prize – to send jpegs/png of four (4) additional works so as to give the jury a good indication of their ability.

Artists shall clearly indicate the artwork to be considered for the prize as
‘firstname_lastname_competingwork’.while the remaining four (4) works can be named as ‘firstname_lastname_additionalwork_1’ Each participating artist can only submit one work for consideration for the Prize.

In addition, participating artists shall also upload the following using the same form:
• An artist statement of no more than five hundred (500) words summarizing the artist’s essence, and motivation.
• The artist’s CV of no more than 2 pages, outlining their professional experience/practice.
• A copy of the bio data page of the artist’s passport, or a copy of a driver’s license, birth certificate, national identity card or voter registration card.

All entries must be the original work of participating artist and must have been produced within the 24 months prior to the closing date of entries.
The photographs of the works should be of high quality, taken with a high resolution camera, in order for the images to be really clear as if the works were perceived in reality.

It is advised that the photographs be of at least 5mb size.

Shortlisted artists shall upon notification be required to submit the original work in an exhibition-ready state (at their own cost) to an address communicated to the artist at the time of notification.

Work so sent shall be in a form that can be displayed to the general public and be part of an exhibition. (In the case of paintings and photographs, they shall be framed and in each case properly authenticated by the participating artist by being signed and dated or with an accompanying certificate).

Physical work delivered to the Trustees which differs dramatically from the image submitted online or which arrives in a condition unfit for exhibition shall be excluded from the shortlist.

To arrive at the final winners, the Jury may at their discretion arrange to interview shortlisted artists in person, via telephone or video-conferencing.

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