Graduate art prize winner announced


BA Fine Art student Astrid Butt has been awarded the 2022 Friends of University Art and Music Graduate prize.

Now in its tenth year, the FUAM Graduate Art Prize recognises the creativity and excellence of recent Art and Design graduates from the University.

Winner Astrid Butt’s video artwork expresses uniquely female anxieties with a particular focus on generational trauma and the terrors of the body.

This kind of recognition has been such a beautiful experience. The bird woman and her story are creations that are so precious to me

Astrid Butt, winner of the 2022 FUAM Graduate Art Prize

“My work takes on a feminist perspective, which I use to discuss harrowing topics, such as domestic abuse, motherhood and sexual assault,” she said.

Astrid won the prize for her short, surrealist horror film 'Bird Diaries' (pictured above).

Astrid said: “This kind of recognition has been such a beautiful experience. The bird woman and her story are creations that are so precious to me. 

“To see others appreciate this film, and even find personal connections within the story, is a dream come true."

The People’s Choice Award

Running alongside the graduate art prize is The People’s Choice Award, voted for by visitors to the gallery.

This year it is awarded to Liv Hedges for her fictional 1960s-style women’s clothing retailer, 'The Misogynarmoire'.

Liv describes The Misogynarmoire as “a multidisciplinary installation that marries set building, photography, textiles, sound, and marketing design to form an immersive 1960s London high-street experience”.

Through the lenses of retro fashion, art and language, The Misogynarmoire offers commentary on what it’s like to be a female in a contemporary society. 

The shortlist

Four finalists were selected by an expert panel of judges in August.

Sunny Wong’s ‘Bruh... It is what it is...’ reflects on the longer-term experience of engaging with social media and the influence this can have on mental health.

Fellow finalist, Suman Shams explores the different facets of her identity through ‘But What's in a Name?’.

You can visit the four finalists’ work in The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery until 5 November 2022, and online on the exhibition website.

Galleries Manager Laura Beare said: “The FUAM Graduate Art Prize is particularly special as it’s usually the first chance for graduating artists to showcase their talent and exhibit their work in a professional gallery space.

“We would like to thank Friends of University Art and Museum (FUAM) for supporting the prize and exhibition for the past 10 years. Through their support, we have been able to nurture budding artistic talent and see some real stars emerge. 

“Congratulations to Astrid and Liv, and of course our other two finalists Sunny and Suman for a fantastic exhibition! We can’t wait to see what you do next.”

Past FUAM prize winners include Emii Alrai (2016 winner), who has exhibited across the world including exhibitions at The Hepworth Wakefield and the Bowmanville Visual Arts Centre in Canada;  Zoe Carlon (2017 winner), who has also exhibited in the UK and beyond with artworks on display everywhere from The Tetley, in Leeds, to Galerie Droste x KPM Berlin, in Germany; and Ibrahim Ince (2021 winner) who was Artist-In-Residence for CYENS – an EU-funded research centre.


Further Information

For more information and to plan your visit, visit the FUAM Graduate Art Prize website.

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