National Gallery of Ireland announce the shortlists for the Zurich Portrait Prize and Zurich Young Portrait Prize

Logos of the Zurich Portrait Prize and Zurich Young Portrait Prize

46 artists shortlisted from 13 counties across the island of Ireland 

Exhibitions run from 02 December 2023 – 10 March 2024

From hundreds of entries, the shortlists of this year’s Zurich Portrait Prize and Zurich Young Portrait Prize have been announced by the National Gallery of Ireland. 25 artists, working across a variety of media, have made it through to the final stage of the Zurich Portrait Prize, while 20 young artists aged between four and eighteen years old have been shortlisted for the Zurich Young Portrait Prize.

The Zurich Portrait Prize shortlist includes painting, sculpture and photography, demonstrating the breadth of contemporary Irish art. The winner of the Zurich Portrait Prize will receive a cash prize of €15,000 and will be commissioned to create a work for the national portrait collection, for which they will be awarded a further €5,000. Two additional awards of €1,500 will be given to highly commended works. Judges for the Zurich Portrait Prize are Dorothy Cross RHA, artist, Dr Nicholas Cullinan, Director, National Portrait Gallery, London, and Anne Stewart, Senior Curator of Art, National Museums Northern Ireland.

The Zurich Young Portrait Prize returns for its fifth year in 2023 as a showcase for the artistic talent of young people from across the island of Ireland. Five winners (one from each respective age category and an overall winner) will be selected from a shortlist of hundreds of entries from young people aged four to 18. Winners will receive a bespoke art box and a cash prize. The overall competition winner will be awarded a personalised wooden box of high-quality art materials and a cash prize of €500. All twenty shortlisted entrants will have their artwork professionally framed/prepared. This year’s Zurich Young Portrait Prize judges are: Jessica O’Donnell, Head of Education and Community Outreach, Hugh Lane Gallery, Ola Majekodunmi, writer, broadcaster and producer, and Tom McLean, visual artist and curator.

Exhibitions of the shortlisted works in both competitions run at the National Gallery of Ireland from 2 December 2023 and 10 March 2024. 


Shortlisted artists for the Zurich Portrait Prize 2023 at the National Gallery of Ireland:

Gerry Blake (Wicklow), Courtney, living on a bus, 2021, photograph

Jana Bulochova (Dublin), Infinite Self, 2021, photograph

Leo Byrne (Dublin), Sheik Mikailu Bah, 2022, photograph

Comhghall Casey (Tyrone/Dublin), Self Portrait, 2020, oil on board

Ana Colomer (Clare), (sea)Urchin, 2023, acrylic on tondo canvas

Shane Coughlan (Dublin), Patrick, back from the shops, 2023, photograph

Jonathan Daczkowski (Dublin), Chloe McCarthy, 2023, photograph

Aisling Dunne (Dublin), Before and After, 2023, photograph

Kit French (Cork), Self - Portrait - Light Through the Window, 2022, oil on canvas

Ellius Grace (Dublin), Sinéad O'Connor in Her Garden, 2021, photograph

Vanessa Jones (Dublin), Wall (self-portrait), 2022, oil on linen

Lynn Kennedy (Dublin), Orpen Minded, 2023, oil on canvas

Marie Le Men (Dublin), Seán Hillen, 2023, watercolour on paper

Sarah Liddane (Kerry), Waiting for inspiration, 2023, graphite and charcoal on paper

Paul MacCormaic (Dublin), Annie Murphy, former lover of Bishop Eamonn Casey, at her home in California, 2023, acrylic and oil on canvas

Ryan O’Sullivan (Cork), Life’s a Drag, 2023, photograph

Mantas Poderys (Donegal), Shota, 2021, pastel on cotton paper

Sorcha Frances Ryder (Dublin), Wide Awake, 2023, photograph

David Sexton (Dublin), Jyellowl, 2021, photograph

Darragh Shanahan (Dublin), Lara, 2022, pinhole photograph

Marie Smith (Cavan), Armand, 2023, fired clay on wooden stand

David Stephenson (Wicklow), Ann and Ollie, Main Street, Wexford, 2023, photograph

Bob Tait (Dublin), Jim, 2023, photograph

Lee Welch (Dublin), Jerry Saltz as Michelangelo "David", 2023, acrylic on polyester

Adrian Wojtas (Meath/Dublin), Manou, 2023, photograph


Shortlisted artists for the Zurich Young Portrait Prize 2023 at the National Gallery of Ireland:

Elijah Coada (Sligo), Sharing Toys is Hard, collage, pencil & marker on paper

Elise O’Reilly (Dublin), My Granny on a Thursday, markers & pencils on paper

Isabel Brogan (Clare), Isabel and her technicoloured dream jumper, pencil, paint and paint pens on card

Nadia Navikone (Clare/Tipperary), Colourful Nadia, paint on card

Pierre Gaultier Swords (Cavan), My Brother Noah, water based crayons and acrylic paint on paper

Adam Wiercioch Chinatamunnee (Cavan), My Father, collage, mixed media, gelli prints, marker, newspaper on paper

Conor Mooney (Dublin), My Selfie, pencil and oil pastels on canvas

Jasmine Jaiyeola (Meath), My Beautiful Mom, pencil & watercolour on paper

Mary-Jane Brogan (Clare), Away with the Fairies, pencil, marker, pen & colouring pencil on paper

Rebecca O’Donoghue (Cork), Sam Won’t Eat His Cornflakes, pencil & poster paint on paper

Estella Morrissey (Dublin), Travel With Optimism, pencil on paper

Gabby Kim (Dublin), My Sleeping Mother, acrylic paint & pencil on paper

Maya Ryan (Sligo), Reach for me, pencil, charcoal, pen, book pages, paper bags & collage, cardboard on paper

Ruaidhrí Condon (Dublin), Self Portrait, oil on canvas

Zihan He (Dublin), Parenthood, oil, pastel, acrylic, gouache, collage on paper

Robin Wolfe (Dublin), The mirror on my bedroom wall, gouache & oil pastel on canvas

Ross McHale (Kildare), Ravens' Reflection, oil on canvas & printed poem

Solomon Doyle (Louth), Portrait of an Artist: A Reflection of His Ensuing Self, oil, acrylic & gold pen on canvas

Gianna Fitzgibbon (Kerry), Portrait of my Baby Brother, oil on canvas

Madia Rahman Kushi (Donegal), Reflections of Myself, acrylic on canvas


Dr Caroline Campbell, Director of the National Gallery of Ireland, said, “With the annual Zurich Portrait Prize and Zurich Young Portrait Prize, our aim is to showcase the work of Irish artists and encourage an interest in contemporary Irish portraiture. Each year, the artists shortlisted demonstrate an incredible breadth of Irish artistic talent. We're proud to partner with Zurich Insurance plc once again this year and we look forward to seeing who and what has inspired artists of all ages to create portraits in 2023.”

Neil Freshwater, CEO of Zurich, said, “The Zurich Portrait Prize and Zurich Young Portrait Prize showcases the wonderful creativity and expertise of Ireland’s portrait artists of all ages. We are delighted to see such a strong and diverse selection of artworks in this year’s shortlists and very proud to sponsor these uplifting competitions.”




Notes to Editor:

  • Images are available via WeTransfer or on request. 
  • Artists are available for interview.


Exhibition listing:

The Zurich Portrait Prize and Zurich Young Portrait Prize exhibitions will be on display in Room 23, Portrait Gallery, National Gallery of Ireland: 2 December 2023 – 10 March 2024.


About the National Gallery of Ireland:

The National Gallery of Ireland is one of the country’s most popular visitor attractions housing the nation’s collection of European and Irish art from about 1300 to the present day, and an extensive Library & Archive. Entry to the collection is free for all to enjoy, learn and be inspired. For more information see: 

Instagram: @nationalgalleryofireland

Facebook: @nationalgalleryofireland

LinkedIn: @National Gallery of Ireland 

Twitter: @NGIreland


About Zurich:

Ireland is Zurich’s location of choice for its pan-European company Zurich Insurance plc (ZIP). Since the beginning of 2009, ZIP has been headquartered in Dublin and it is the main risk carrier for Zurich’s general insurance business in the EU. Neil Freshwater is the CEO of Zurich Insurance plc. In terms of domestic business, Zurich focuses on two key business areas in Ireland – General Insurance and Life. In Ireland, Zurich employs over 1,250 people.

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