Monday 18 July 2016

BP Portrait Award: Next Generation 2016

A season of free events for young people aged 14 – 21

Supported by BP

Talented young musicians and artists will be featured at this year’s Private View of the BP Portrait Award, at the National Portrait Gallery, run exclusively for young people as part of its BP Portrait Award Next Generation project.

Following the success of the first Young People’s Private View in 2013 and subsequently in 2014 and 2015, the free event returns on Tuesday 2 August 2016. The Gallery’s only after-hours social event for, and by, young people, the evening offers hundreds of 14-21 year olds the chance to view the popular BP Portrait Award 2016 and meet BP Portrait Award winning artists. Everyone aged 14-21 is invited to attend on a first-come, first served basis by emailing [email protected] with their full names, ages and addresses.

Hosted by the Gallery’s youth advisory panel, the Youth Forum, whose members give talks and run drawing sessions during the evening, the night is a platform for youth talent and special performances in the Gallery, including 19 year-old  singer/songwriter Saskia Kristin and 21 year old London-based singer Shama Joseph. DJ Ms Timberlina will be playing a youth-selected playlist throughout the evening. Limited edition branded glow-in-the-dark wristbands will be available for the first 200 RSVPs.

With competitions, BP Portrait Award-winning artist talks, goody bags and competition prizes supplied by Cass Art, there is also a special menu of vegetarian pizza, chicken kebabs, nut-free chocolate brownies and non-alcoholic ‘mocktails’ available throughout the evening.

This year’s BP Portrait Award first prize-winning artist, Clara Drummond, will be special guest, giving an exclusive talk about her winning portrait and running a drawing activity. Past BP Portrait Award-winner Ray Richardson will also be there on the night, running another drawing session.

The evening will also see the launch of the Gallery’s dedicated Young People’s Instagram account @NPGYouth and guests will be encouraged to share their experiences from the night to the hashtag #BPNextGen. A dedicated Youth Crew will be filming the evening and interviewing artists and participants for social media and the project website.

The event is part of a season of creative portraiture sessions and summer schools for young people taking place at the National Portrait Gallery, London, as part of the BP Portrait Award 2016.

Now in its seventh year and supported by BP, the BP Portrait Award: Next Generation project aims to engage young artists of the future with portraiture.    

Young people, including the Gallery’s Youth Forum, play a key role in designing BP Portrait Award: Next Generation events to give a youth voice to the project. BP Portrait Award: Next Generation has engaged over 2,500 young people and over eighty BP Portrait Award-winning artists since it began in 2010.

A guest at the Young People’s Private View 2015 said: ‘The evening has been a really great opportunity, I have enjoyed meeting like-minded young people and finding out the different paths that everyone is taking. It is also amazing to have a chance to talk to the practising artists.’ 

Miranda, from Youth Forum said of the Young People’s Private View 2015: ‘The evening epitomised how I envision a Gallery should be: bursting with life, fun and creativity.’

Dr Nicholas Cullinan, Director, National Portrait Gallery, London, says: ‘Making the Gallery accessible after-hours just for young people gives them the opportunity to make the space their own for the night, and to experience the BP Portrait Award 2016 with BP Portrait Award winners and with their peers. The Gallery’s Youth Forum is very excited to open up the Gallery just for 14-21 year olds, and we are looking forward to sharing our portraits with them.’

Des Violaris, Director, UK Arts and Culture, BP, says: ‘It is a pleasure to see so many young people involved with this exciting project. I am certain that many young people will take this unique opportunity to experience the National Portrait Gallery at night at this special event, where they can socialise with friends, meet artists and celebrate portraiture and the talent of their peers.’

For further information about the Young People’s Private View and other free BP Portrait Award: Next Generation events for 14-21 year olds, please see below or visit #BPNextGen

Tuesday 2 August

Young People’s Private View

18.30 – 20.30

An exclusive opportunity for young people to view the BP Portrait Award 2016 exhibition after hours with drawing, activities, talks, artists, goody bags and prizes supplied by Cass Art, refreshments, performances by young musicians, DJs and much more. The Young People’s Private Viewis hosted by the Gallery’s Youth Forum and open to 14–21year-olds only. RSVP is essential on a first-come, first-served basis. Age ID required on the night. To RSVP, email [email protected] with full name, age and address.

For further Press information and image requests please contact: Ailsa Mellor, Press Manager, National Portrait Gallery Tel: 020 7321 6620 (not for publication) Email: [email protected]

To download Press images visit:

National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place WC2H 0HE, opening hours Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday: 10am – 6pm (Gallery closure commences at 5.50pm) Late Opening: Thursday, Friday: 10am – 9pm  (Gallery closure commences at 8.50pm) Nearest Underground: Leicester Square/Charing Cross General information: 0207 306 0055 Recorded information: 020 7312 2463  Website/Tickets: 


BP PORTRAIT AWARD: NEXT GENERATION is an exciting project offering free opportunities for 14-21 year-olds to creatively engage with painted portraiture through the BP Portrait Award. For the seventh year, young people will be able to connect with past BP Portrait Award-winning artists, meet other young people interested in portraiture and create their own portraits through a series of programmes including Taster Sessions, Drop-in Drawing, three-day Summer Schools, the fourth after-hours Young People’s Private View, an onsite display showcasing the project, and youth-generated digital content including video interviews with artists and participants. BP Portrait Award: Next Generation has so far engaged over 2,500 young people, onsite and regionally. Bookings for programmes are open now, and applications for Summer Schools  close at 12.00 on 3 August   #bpnextgen  

BP support for UK Arts & Culture: In the UK, BP is a major supporter of the arts with a programme that spans over 50 years.

This is the first year that the Private View is open to 20 and 21 year olds (previously 14-19 years).
The application date for the two three-day Next Generation Summer Schools is extended to 12:00 on 3 August.

Cass Art

Cass Art, the UK’s leading art suppliers retailer, has kindly supplied Goody bags, art materials and competition prizes. With nine shops across the UK and an online shop at, they stock the world’s best art materials at guaranteed lowest prices, from leading brands like Winsor & Newton, Faber-Castell, Daler Rowney and Fabriano. Cass Art also host a series of satellite events with BP Portrait Award artists in their stores.