Tuesday , 19 September 2017
                                                    
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Royal Society honour for artist’s blend of old photos and modern print

Mark Whithorn RA Piece1

Haunting images created by a University of Derby artist have won a coveted award, at one of the world’s longest running and most distinguished arts exhibitions.
 
Mark Whithorn – on the University’s Masters (MA) in Fine Art degree course – prints digital colour images of funeral flower bouquets, watch parts and domestic objects on top of original, vintage black-and-white portrait photographs; creating intriguing and even unsettling images.
 
The unique images have won him a prestigious ‘British Institution Award’, in this year’s annual Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. The Summer Exhibition is in its 246th year and is thought to be the world’s largest open entry arts exhibition.
 
Mark’s work went on display at the Summer Exhibition this week (on until August 17) alongside paintings, photographs, sculptures, film installations and architectural models by renowned artists including Turner Prize winner and TV presenter Grayson Perry, English abstract sculptor Sir Anthony Caro and contemporary British painter Jock McFadyen.
 
Commenting on his award, Mark, 23, originally from Macclesfield, said: “I was over the moon to be accepted into the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition but to also have won a British Institution Award topped it all off. I am still in shock at this, it is the biggest achievement so far of my career as an artist.”
 
Rodger Brown, Programme Leader for the MA in Fine Art at the University, added: “This is a great achievement for Mark and a great opportunity to show work at what is arguably one of the most august art institutions in the world. 
 
“His work will sit alongside a host of well-known, established artists, and the potential to reach a large audience is very high. This is just the sort of professionalism we expect from our postgraduate students and Mark has worked hard to achieve this.”
 
The annual Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London (W1J 0BD) is on now and runs until August 17. It is open from 10am to 6pm every day except Friday, when it is open 10am to 10pm

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