Aspiring artists given chance to shine with Plymouth Young Contemporary Open 2016

Budding artists from across the Plymouth area are being challenged to get creative as part of a new bi-annual competition being staged in the city.

The Plymouth Young Contemporary Open (PYCO) 2016 is designed to showcase the incredible talent of the area’s children and young people.

Anyone aged four to 30 who is living, working or studying in the Plymouth area will be invited to submit work across all contemporary art genres including photography, installation, sculpture, performance, film and more.

The launch of PYCO follows the incredibly successful Plymouth Contemporary Open, the result of a collaboration between Peninsula Arts at Plymouth University and the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery which was held for the first time in 2015.

This competition is being coordinated by Peninsula Arts and Effervescent, with associated partners Plymouth Culture, Radiant Gallery, Plymouth History Centre, Karst, Ocean Studios, Plymouth Arts Centre and Plymouth College of Art.

Dr Sarah Chapman, Director of Peninsula Arts, said:

“Plymouth is gaining a reputation for its work to support both established and emerging artists and this new competition is further evidence of that. The support we have already generated – including the backing of Plymouth Culture – demonstrates this event’s potential importance to the local arts community and the city as a whole. Just as the Plymouth Contemporary Open was a huge success in drawing entrants from across the UK and Europe, we hope the PYCO will become a vibrant new platform for showcasing young talent from the Plymouth area.”
The theme for the first year of the competition is GROW and entrants are invited to create something original based on this, letting their imagination and creativity run wild.

It will open for entries on Monday 08 February, with the deadline for submission on Friday 08 April, and entries will be judged by a panel of experts from arts organisations across the city and beyond.

They will select outstanding works to be curated into a high profile dual-site show at Radiant Gallery and Peninsula Arts Gallery at Plymouth University that will be open to the public from July 02-09. The judges will also award a range of prizes in a variety of age categories, including workshops and opportunities with local artists, arts materials and equipment and paid commissions to make or develop more work.

Nick Hewlett, Producer at Effervescent, said:

“The Plymouth Young Contemporary Open will celebrate creativity and develop the aspirations and ambitions of young people as they are exposed to technically and conceptually exciting work from their own peers. There will also be an exciting range of creative opportunities across the city to make contemporary art accessible to all whatever your age.”

Ray White, Curator at the Radiant Gallery and one of the five judges for the show, added:

“Contemporary art, at its best, challenges our perceptions of society. It pushes the boundaries of creative ability, and does so through any vehicle you can imagine – photography, installation, sculpture, painting, text, performance, whatever your imagination can create. I’m really looking forward to seeing how people interpret the theme GROW.”