Zurich Portrait Prize 2018 - judges
Zurich Portrait Prize 2018 judges (l-r) Tanya Kiang; Geraldine O'Neill; Sue RainsfordCredit

Press Release 13/06/2018

National Gallery announces Zurich Portrait Prize 2018 Judging Panel

The National Gallery of Ireland is delighted to announce the panel of judges for the 2018 Zurich Portrait Prize. Judges are Geraldine O'Neill, Sue Rainsford and Tanya Kiang. The Zurich Portrait Prize invites applications from artists living in Ireland, and from Irish artists based abroad. Deadline for submissions is 22 June 2018.

Geraldine O’Neill lives and works in her native Dublin and has exhibited extensively in Ireland and abroad including at the National Gallery of Ireland, the Irish Museum of Modern Art and the National Portrait Gallery, London. Sue Rainsford is a writer and researcher based in Dublin and is the recipient of the Arts Council Literature Bursary Award and the VAI/DCC Critical Writing Award. Tanya Kiang has over 25 years’ experience in the visual arts in Ireland. She was Editor of the Irish visual art magazine Circa from 1991-98 and has been the Director of the Gallery of Photography since 1998.

The Zurich Portrait Prize competition is open to artists working in all media. Shortlisted artists’ works will be exhibited in the Gallery from 6 October 2018 – 13 January 2019. Admission to the exhibition is free.

The winner will receive a cash prize of €15,000, and a commission worth €5,000, to create a work for inclusion in the National Portrait Collection. There will also be two awards of €1,500 for highly commended works. For competition entry details see nationalgallery.ie/art-and-artists/zurich-portrait-prize

Last year’s Portrait Prize winner was Jack Hickey, with commendations awarded to Myra Jago and David Hamilton. Previous winners are Vera Klute; Gerry Davis and Nick Miller. This year, the Gallery plans to extend the reach of the competition and engage a wide range of audiences around the country through a supporting education programme. There will be local talks by shortlisted artists, tours and workshops on portraiture.


Contact: Emma Pearson, Press and Communications Office, National Gallery of Ireland.
Tel: +353 (0) 1 663 3519 / +353 (0)87 918 7941. Email:
[email protected].

Zurich Portrait Prize
6 October 2018 – 13 January 2019
Portrait Gallery (Room 23). Admission Free

Curator: Dr Brendan Rooney, Head Curator, National Gallery of Ireland

Notes to Editors:
Selected images are available from the Gallery’s Press Office, email
[email protected]
For more information on the application process and competition rules, see www.nationalgallery.ie/art-and-artists/zurich-portrait-prize

About Zurich:
Ireland is the location of choice for Zurich Insurance plc (ZIP) which is Zurich's pan-European business company. ZIP has been headquartered in Dublin since the beginning of 2009 and is led by Patrick Manley, CEO. Within Ireland, Zurich focuses on two key business areas – the General Insurance business which is based in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 with a call centre in County Wexford, and the Life and Pensions business which is based in Blackrock, County Dublin. In Ireland, Zurich employs approximately 1,100 people.

About the Judges:

Geraldine O’Neill
Geraldine O’Neill’s work is concerned with visual culture, kitsch, fine art, the marginal and overlooked, and quantum mechanics. She has exhibited extensively in Ireland and abroad including at the National Gallery of Ireland, the Irish Museum of Modern Art and the National Portrait Gallery, London. Geraldine was shortlisted for the Gallery’s Portrait Prize in 2014. In 2016 her specially commissioned portrait of John Rocha entered the collection of the National Gallery of Ireland. Most recent exhibitions include Many-World Interpretation (agus rudaí eile nach iad), 2017 in Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin; Volta Basel, Switzerland with Kevin Kavanagh; and SLAG Contemporary, New York. She is a member of Aosdána and an associate of the RHA. O’Neill’s many awards include the Ireland – US Council/Irish Arts Review Portraiture Award and the Arts Council of Ireland Bursary.

Sue Rainsford
Sue Rainsford is a graduate of Trinity College, IADT and Bennington College, and she is the recipient of the Arts Council Literature Bursary Award and the VAI/DCC Critical Writing Award. Recent commissions and residencies include ‘Scream i, Scream ii & Scream iii’ written for TULCA 2017, ‘nine notes on prosthetics & poetry’, on Nickie Hayden at the LAB, January 2018, ‘On Clay and Transitional Spaces’ on Vanessa Donoso López’s I Shall Change The Way Things Are Ordered at Kevin Kavanagh, March 2018, and The Freud Project Residency at IMMA, where she collaborated with artist Bridget O'Gorman in response to Lucian Freud's assertion 'I want the paint to feel like flesh', October 2017-April 2018. Her work has appeared in VAN, Artefact Journal, and Aster(ix) Journal. Her debut novel, Follow Me To Ground, is available from New Island Books.

Tanya Kiang
Born in London in 1964, Tanya Kiang studied Communications at Dublin City University, where she majored in Photography. She graduated with Distinction in 1985, and held a variety of positions including teaching Informatics, installing early internet systems and freelance art writing. In 1991 she took up the position of Editor of Circa Art Magazine, Ireland’s leading journal of visual culture. She has been the Director of the Gallery of Photography in Dublin since 1998. She has curated exhibitions by many leading contemporary photographers, and has a keen interest in developing the audience for contemporary photography through open air screenings. She is a jury member on numerous international photography panels and is a regular reviewer at international photofestivals. Recent projects include curated exhibitions for Irish Museum of Modern Art, for New York Photo Festival, Fotohof Salzburg, Pingyao Photo Festival, Chongqing Biennale and Three Shadows Gallery, Beijing.

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