News / 25 Mar 2024

Fine Art students catch the attention of British Art Medal Society judges

BA (Hons) Fine Art

Leeds Arts University BA (Hons) Fine Art students were among the prize winners for the British Art Medal Society Student Competition 2024.

The Student Medal Project was set up to promote the art of the medal in universities and art colleges. As well as the annual competition, the project offers mentoring, exhibition, inclusion into a catalogue, awards after graduation, commissions, and events.

128 medals were submitted for the competition this year. Entries came from 16 colleges in the UK, plus Pforzheim University in Germany and Zakapone Institute in Poland.

First year BA (Hons) Fine Art student Evie Black received the Honorable Mention Prize for their medal, awarded by the Bigbury Mint. Evie’s medal is about appreciating our everyday environments, and their sometimes chaotic, ridiculous nature which can be overlooked.

“I wanted to depict the irony and randomness in the ordinary with storytelling elements. For example, the fish skeleton lying inches away from a water grate, the cracked pavement littered with the contents of a spilled purse, amongst many other details that would go unnoticed in real life unless viewed with an eager, imaginative eye. Paralleled on the other side with a hectic urban landscape where the natural and the artificial fight for control but where life still finds a way to thrive."
"I am thrilled to have won a prize for my medal. It is so encouraging and rare to have artwork validated like this so I feel really proud!"

Evie Black, BA (Hons) Fine Art student

Students Sophia Matty, Millie Sunderland and Eve Sorley were each awarded Merit awards for their submissions. Millie’s medal 'Free the Damned' serves to encapsulate the restoration and preservation of British wildlife, with a focus on the reintroduction of beavers into the UK and surrounding areas as she explains.

“Historically beavers had been hunted to extinction in the 16th century for their pelt and scent glands; we are now reintroducing them as a natural terraforming solution, mitigating floods on wetlands and enhancing the habitats for a diverse range of wildlife. The intricate process of medal making parallels this journey, as each stage, from clay to wax to bronze, contributes to a detailed design filled with patience and care, mirroring the small yet significant steps taken to revive British wildlife.”

Millie Sunderland, BA (Hons) Fine Art student

Leeds Arts University were also award with British Art Medal Society’s College Prize, commending the course for the overall high standard of the medals.

“I am absolutely delighted that yet again we are among those awarded the British Art Medal Society student prizes. It demonstrates the innovation and continuous fresh thinking that our students display week in, week out in their practise. We are all so incredibly proud of the students involved and will be looking to facilitate new and inspiring ways to participate in the future. Alongside this BAMS has awarded LAU their College Prize, which recognises one University each year for the overall high standard of their students' medals and their excellent understanding, skill and enthusiasm for medal making. This is the icing on the cake!

Liadin Cooke, Lecturer, BA (Hons) Fine Art Lecturer

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