Panel of Judges
Larry Achiampong (b.1984, London) studied Mixed Media Fine Art at the University of Westminster (2002-05) and Sculpture at the Slade School of Fine Art (2006-08). Achiampong’s solo and collaborative projects employ imagery, aural and visual archives, live performance and sound to explore ideas surrounding class, cross-cultural and post-digital identity. His work examines his communal and personal heritage – in particular, the intersection between pop culture and the postcolonial position, seeking to reveal the entrenched socio-political contradictions in contemporary society. Achiampong has worked on commissions, residencies and exhibitions with major institutions both in the UK and internationally including Tate, the Venice and Singapore Biennales, Somerset House and Art on the Underground (his commission for Westminster Station, Pan African Flags for the Relic Travellers’ Alliance, was installed until February 2020). Achiampong currently serves on the Board of Trustees at Iniva (Institute of International Visual Arts) and is a 2019 recipient of the Paul Hamlyn Award for Artists.
Professor Simon Baron-Cohen
Professor Simon Baron-Cohen is one of the world's leading experts in understanding autism and related neurological conditions. His books include 'Mindblindness', which in 1995 transformed our understanding of the psychology of autism, through to ‘Zero Degrees of Empathy’ (2011), which gave a new perspective on biological and social factors that determine cruelty and kindness. Professor Baron-Cohen is the Director of the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge and President of the International Society of Autism Research.
Sacha Craddock is an independent curator and critic, who has written for numerous national newspapers including the Guardian and The Times. She co-founded ArtSchool Palestine in Ramallah, which offers a structure and place for the exchange and development of contemporary art, as well as founding the Fellowship in Contemporary Art at British School at Rome. She currently chairs the Bloomberg New Contemporaries, which provides a means for newly graduated fine art students to be exhibited nationwide, and has been involved in the selection process since 1996.
John Hooper is a lens based media, sound and installation artist. John studied Graphic Design at Camberwell College of Art in London and went on to be a portrait photographer shooting for Sleaze Nation, The Guardian, Vanity Fair and The Wire, amongst others. John is the founder of Landsounds and co-director (along side Louise Beer) of *Pale Blue Dot Collective and †Print Science. John is also a regular contributor to super/collider.
John uses his photography to discover the natural world and the vastness above our heads. Not taking the traditional route of many astro photographers, John prefers to navigate the heavens using skills honed from years of landscape photography.
John is currently working on a sound commission for the Bodleian Library x Fusion Arts in Oxford, a two month residency at The Margate School and a sound based exhibition at The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora in Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand.
*Pale Blue Dot Collective - through exhibitions, screenings and workshops we endeavour to bring a new perspective about the detrimental impact of the climate crisis, not only to humanity but to all life and all environments. †Print Science - brings images from the history of astronomy back to life in a series of cards, screen-printed tote bags and sculptural framed objects.
Janice Hughes lives and works in Belfast. She graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 2017. Janice works in a variety of mediums including painting, collage and film inspired in part by her understanding of nature, her films incorporate animation, often with single frame footage taken from family videos, ‘collaged’ with seed heads, leaves and dried flowers. Her work has been sold at markets and shown in various group exhibitions including Joint Effort II, Lubbock, Texas (2017), and RUA 134th Annual Exhibition, (2015). Commissions include a music video for Martha Ffion's No Applause (2018).
Mary Simpson is the CEO of Spectrum and has worked in the field of autism for over 25 years. Mary has extensive knowledge of all current economic, social and regulatory issues in the care sector and autism. Mary has extensive links within the art world, through Spectrum’s affinity with artistic expression. Mary has been instrumental in the development of local and national art auctions to both raise awareness of autism and fundraise for a dedicated Education and Arts Centre in Cornwall.
Mary firmly believes that art can create a powerful and meaningful dialogue to those who feel socially isolated, lonely or different from those around them. Mary is passionate about giving individuals with autism the platform and opportunity to show others their unique world view as well as their interests, hopes and perceptions of life.
Alison Wilding OBE