Launched in March 2014, the East London Painting Prize was created to explore and celebrate the diversity in painting practices and different approaches to the medium, as well as championing contemporary artists from east London. The prize was open to both established and emerging artists from the east London boroughs of Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Barking & Dagenham and Redbridge.
Selected from over 300 submissions by artists from across East London, 43 artists were shortlisted by a panel of nationally renowned curators and artists, comprising Sarah Elson (Contemporary Art Society and Bow Arts Board), Matt Price (art critic and curator), Varda Caivano (artist), Michael Goldhill and Maitreyi Maheshwari (Acting Director of Zabludowicz Collection).
A shortlist show comprising work by all 43 shortlisted artists opened to the public from 21st May - 1st June in an east London warehouse located in Strand East (E15) culminating in a winners announcement show hosted by Nunnery Gallery & The Legacy List.
Newham painter Nathan Eastwood was selected as the winner of the East London Painting Prize on 27th May 2014, and receives a life changing £10,000 and a prominent solo show at East London’s Nunnery Gallery later this year.
Nathan’s paintings describe small moments in everyday life in meticulous detail, from cleaning the bathroom to mulling thoughts over a cup of tea. Using enamel paint on board and a grey palate, Nathan builds up layers of paint to create images which are both photorealistic, yet riddled with imperfections of trapped dust and loose brushwork.
Born in Scotland, Nathan now lives and works in Newham. He graduated from Byam Shaw School of Fine Art in 2009, and has gone on to exhibit in a range of shows including the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition (2013), Contemporary British Painting at The Crypt, St Marylebone (2013); and Towards a New Socio-‐Painting, a Transition Gallery touring show this year.
For his solo exhibition in the Autumn, Nathan plans to create a new series of paintings focusing on domestic life, inspired by his surroundings in east London. He will also now be able to invest in a bigger studio, allowing him to undertake more ambitious works.
The East London Painting Prize was created by The Legacy List, the charity of Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park with the Goldhill Family, Zabludowicz Collection, and in association with Bow Arts. The prize honours the life and work of painter and philanthropist, Jack Goldhill and commemorates his major contributions to the east End.
Claire Gevaux, Head of Creative Programmes of The Legacy List said: “We are proud to announce Nathan Eastwood as the first winner of this auspicious prize. Having developed the prize to reflect the very best of east London talent and give a platform to contemporary painters, we are delighted that Nathan, with his representation of every day life in east London, has been awarded this prize.”
Michael Goldhill, representative of the Goldhill Family said: “The selection of Nathan Eastwood is testament to the Goldhill Family’s desire to support artists at all stages of their careers. My father would have been a proud advocate of the panel’s choice.”
Maitreyi Maheshwari, Acting Director of Zabludowicz Collection said: “Nathan's painting was both a thoughtful and exciting submission and his practice suggests a very distinctive style and approach to the medium. Winning the first East London Painting Prize will facilitate his ambitious plans for the future.”
Rosamond Murdoch, Director of the Nunnery Gallery said: “Nathan’s painting Nico’s Café is a eulogy to old East London without being stuck in the past – it is a painting that still speaks of today. I am extremely excited to work with Nathan to curate his first solo exhibition later this year.”
Nathan Eastwood’s solo show as winner of the East London Painting Prize ‘Work / Recreation / Freedom’ took take place at the Nunnery Gallery in October 2014.