Seven Counties Open 2017


About the Open

The OVADA Seven Counties Open has been created to provide exhibition opportunities, support and development for contemporary artists based in Oxfordshire and the surrounding Counties. Submitted work can be in any medium and artists can be at any stage of their career. OVADA has designed a simple submission process aimed to focus purely on the artwork rather than supporting material.

The OVADA Open Exhibition 2017

Artists will be selected by external Judges for inclusion in the biennial Open exhibition at OVADA’s Warehouse from 12 May – 4 June 2017 to coincide with Oxfordshire Artweeks. There will be a Preview event on the evening of Thursday 11 May 2017, 6-9pm.

Judging Panel

The entries will be selected by an experienced panel of independent Judges including:

Paul Hobson who has been the Director of Modern Art Oxford since September 2013. Paul read History at Oxford University and completed post-graduate studies in aesthetics and contemporary visual theory.  Working for more than twenty years in the art world, Paul has formerly worked in senior roles at the Contemporary Art Society, The Showroom, the Serpentine Gallery and Royal Academy of Arts in London.

Isabel de Vasconcellos is a Curator and Writer based in London. Starting her career as Museums Liaison at White Cube in the mid-1990s, she went on to manage Antony Gormley’s commissions, exhibitions and studio for ten years, and has worked with a wide range of established and emerging artists along the way. Her recent book, Fourth Plinth: How London Created the Smallest Sculpture Park in the World, is published by Art / Books.

There is no pre-selection process meaning that the Judges will view and make their selection from all of the submissions that we receive.


OVADA Professional Development Award:
Two of the artists selected to exhibit in the Open will be chosen for a subsequent show hosted by Arts at the Old Fire Station, Oxford, in Spring 2018. The prize-winners will be selected by representatives from both the Old Fire Station and OVADA, and the artists can use this opportunity to make new work collaboratively or independently. In order to prepare for this fully funded exhibition the artists will each receive an artist’s fee, tailored critical and professional mentoring and a voucher to spend on art supplies from Broad Canvas.

The Rishi Mullett-Sadones Memorial Prize:
A voucher for materials from Broad Canvas and professional practice mentoring sessions will be presented to one of the artists exhibiting in the Open who is aged between 18 – 25. This prize for outstanding work will support the practice of an emerging young artist in memory of talented photographer, Rishi Mullett-Sadones. Rishi represented OVADA as a Youth Panelist from 2010 – 2011 and was founder of art group Creative Collective, which was set up as a platform for other young artists.

All prize winners will also receive an OVADA booklet as part of the ‘A Little Bit Of {You}’ archive project and free Associate membership for one year.

Read testimonials from past Professional Development Award winners here.

Who is eligible?

Contemporary artists aged 18 or over practicing or linked to Oxfordshire and the surrounding Counties of Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Gloucestershire, Northamptonshire, Wiltshire and Warwickshire. Artists can be at any stage in their career and working in any medium. Artists who have previously exhibited with OVADA are welcome to apply however the work must be different from what was shown before.


-Up to three artworks in any medium can be submitted, including painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, photography, performance, sound or video.

-Artists must have the works in their photo submission available to show, otherwise the entry will be disqualified.

-There is no size limit however very large works or site-specific installations should be discussed with OVADA prior to submission.

-Work must be as shown in the submitted photographs/links and in a presentable form – although not necessarily framed.

-Artists will be informed of the Judges’ decision by 16 April 2017.

-Selected work must be delivered/couriered to OVADA Warehouse between 27 – 30 April 2017 and collected w/c 5 June 2017, at the expense of the artist.

Please note that this is a non-selling exhibition. OVADA will put potential buyers in touch with the artists directly and does not take any commission.

Apply online:

-Entry is FREE for current OVADA Associates – join here today!

-For non-Associates there is an entry fee of £12.

-Artists can enter up to 3 individual artworks/series. A maximum of 3 images or audio/video files can be submitted via the online application form.

-We do not require a CV or Artist’s Statement. Simply enter the title(s), medium, dimensions and date when you submit your images.

Deadline for submission: EXTENDED TO 8pm on 7 APRIL 2017

7 April 2017 at 12 noon


Continue to the Online Submission Form.

-If you would like support with the online form or need to submit your artwork in an alternative accessible format please contact us so that we can discuss individual requirements.

-A representative is welcome to apply on behalf of an artist, with their permission. 

With special thanks to:

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