Monday 16 April 2018

Entry is now open for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2018, the leading international photographic portrait competition, which celebrates and promotes the very best in contemporary portrait photography. The National Portrait Gallery, London is inviting submissions from Monday 16 April until 23.59 on Tuesday 12 June 2018.

The competition is open to everyone aged 18 and over from around the world. Photographers are encouraged to interpret portrait in its widest sense of photography concerned with portraying people with an emphasis on their identity as individuals. The winner of the competition will receive £15,000.

The National Portrait Gallery’s Photographic Portrait Prize, sponsored by international law firm Taylor Wessing since 2008, is one of the most competitive photography awards in the world and showcases the work of some of the most exciting and cutting-edge contemporary photographers. Since the international competition began in 1993, it has established a reputation for creativity and excellence, with works submitted by a range of photographers, from leading professionals to talented amateurs and the most exciting emerging artists.

The Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2017 exhibition featured over fifty selected works and was seen by over 40,000 people at the National Portrait Gallery.

To enter the competition photographers are required to upload their image(s) via the website. All images will be viewed anonymously by a panel of judges and the entrants who are successful in this round will be invited to deliver their work to a venue in London for the final round of physical judging.

For the fourth year running, entrants to the competition are being encouraged to submit works as a series – either a group of individual portraits based on a particular theme, or two or more photographs that form a single portrait when shown together – in addition to stand-alone portraits. One series of photographs submitted to the competition may be chosen by the judges to be exhibited in its entirety. There is no minimum size requirement for submitted prints.

Also for the fourth year running there will be an In Focus display within the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prizeexhibition devoted to the work of one distinguished photographer but not part of the competition.  This accolade has been awarded to Pieter Hugo in 2015, Cristina de Middel in 2016 and Todd Hido in 2017.

Dr Nicholas Cullinan, Director, National Portrait Gallery, London, says: “We’re delighted to be calling for entries to the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2018. The competition always attracts a  diversity of styles, which reflects the international nature of the competition as well as the range of approaches to the portrait genre, including formal, candid, and experimental images. I look forward to judging this year’s submissions. ’  

Tim Eyles, Managing Partner, Taylor Wessing LLP, says: "We have played a role in the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize for so long now that it has become an immutable part of our culture. We're fortunate to be surrounded every day in our offices by photographs from past exhibitions – a daily reminder of the importance of creativity in all areas of work – and we look forward hugely each year to seeing the new entries. Personally I never cease to be inspired by the quality and originality of the photographs. I hope as many people enter this year as have done in the past, so we can look forward to another stunning exhibition.”

The competition is open to anyone over the age of 18. Full information about how to enter, including entry forms and rules, can be found online at .  


18 October 2018 - 27 January 2019

Admission £6 with donation (concessions £4.50) Supported by Taylor Wessing

Entries accepted from Monday 16 April - Deadline for submissions: 23.59 Tuesday 12 June 2018.


A catalogue featuring all the selected photographs and an essay by a leading author, will accompany the exhibition (RRP £15 and £10 Gallery shop exclusive price).  


All entrants have the unique opportunity to buy a special edition of the exhibition catalogue (RRP £15.00 + £5.00 p+p), featuring all the selected artists, an essay by a leading author, and a note of thanks and facsimile signature of the Director of the National Portrait Gallery. The special edition is only available to entrants and will not be available through the Gallery shops or online.  

For further Press information and image requests please contact: Laura McKechan, Senior Communications Manager, National Portrait Gallery Tel: 020 7321 6620 (not for publication) Email:[email protected]
To download Press images:

National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place WC2H 0HE, opening hours Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday: 10.00 – 18.00 (Gallery closure commences at 17.50) Late Opening: Thursday, Friday: 10.00 – 21.00  (Gallery closure commences at 20.50) Nearest Underground: Leicester Square/Charing Cross General information: 0207 306 0055  Recorded information: 020 7312 2463  Website 


The winner of the First Prize will receive £15,000. In addition the judges, at their discretion, will award cash prizes to one or more shortlisted photographers.

Taylor Wessing is a leading full-service international law firm with over 400 partners and 1100 lawyers in 32 countries around the world. We work with clients in the most dynamic industries taking a single minded approach to advising them, and helping them succeed by thinking innovatively about their business issues. Our focus on the industries of tomorrow has enabled us to develop market-leading expertise in: Technology, Media and Communications, Life Sciences, Private Wealth and Energy.