Inspired by ... winners 2007

Inspired by … is the V&A's annual art competition for people on part-time courses, and is supported by NIACE, the National Institute of Continuing Education. Participants create a work of art or craft inspired by the collections of either V&A South Kensington, or the V&A Museum of Childhood.

224 applicants, including two groups, entered the competition in 2007. They came from diverse backgrounds and from over 70 colleges and institutions nationally, and were encouraged by over 100 tutors in art, crafts and design. Some of them had never been to the Museum before but visited with their art group especially for the Inspired By… competition.

The entries were assessed by 21 curators and educators at the V&A. 50 artworks in different media made by students at all levels of skill were selected to go on display at the V&A in the Exhibition Road Entrance Foyer, while five were shown in the Museum of Childhood's Creativity Gallery.

Claire Partington with Kit Maxwell

Claire Partington with Kit Maxwell

Ceramics Galleries Prize

Claire Partington for Vase Chinois

Vase Chinois was made by Claire Partington during her ceramics class at Kensington and Chelsea College.

Inspired by...

‘My work is inspired by the western appropriation and interpretation of eastern styles, especially chinoiserie. The teapots really capture this.’

Judges' comments

 'This entry entirely captures the spirit of Inspired by… with its informed and witty references to 17th and 18th-century chinoiserie. The artist's use of traditional techniques, such as press moulding and sprigging (as can be seen on the teapots that inspired her), is tempered with the playful incorporation of children's toys and high-street costume jewellery. This work is a decorative and novel interpretation of the fanciful craze for 'Chinese' ornament, which seems to gently parody the sources that inspired it.'

Judge: Kit Maxwell

Claire Partington, 'Vase Chinois', Inspired by... 2007

Claire Partington, 'Vase Chinois', Inspired by... 2007

Teapots, John Philip and David Elers, 1690–8. Museum no. C.17-1932

Teapots, John Philip and David Elers, 1690–8. Museum no. C.17-1932

Norma Wall with Ruth Cribb

Norma Wall with Ruth Cribb

Sculpture Prize

Norma Wall for Tin Lizzie

Tin Lizzie was made by Norma Wall during her life drawing class at Beds Adult and Community Learning.

Inspired by...

‘I was inspired and fascinated by Lopes’s and Russell’s curled cover because of the way the materials had changed the images, which although distorted were still recognisable. I used beer cans to turn one of my life-drawing sketches into something soft and malleable yet recognisably still tin.’

Judges' comments

'The idea of creating a relief sculpture in this way really appealed to me, as did the juxtaposition of the hard metallic materials used and the soft contours depicted. Inspiration was taken from two pieces in the V&A not directly related to sculpture and so took a leap of imagination which resulted in an interesting and delicate work of art.'

Judge: Ruth Cribb

Norma Wall, 'Tin Lizzie', Inspired by... 2007

Norma Wall, 'Tin Lizzie', Inspired by... 2007

'The Clans and Tartans of Scotland', Georgia Russell, 2002. Museum no. E.333-2003

'The Clans and Tartans of Scotland', Georgia Russell, 2002. Museum no. E.333-2003

Liam Tasker with Barry Ginley

Liam Tasker with Barry Ginley

Access Prize

Liam Tasker for The Lake at Hinwick Hall College

The Lake at Hinwick Hall College was made by Liam Tasker during his creative arts class at Hinwick Hall.

Inspired by...

'Liam has Down syndrome and uses a symbol chart to communicate. He has painted here a picture of his college grounds with animals in it in Beatrix Potter’s style.'

Judges' comments

'Inspired by Beatrix Potter and with the addition of a familiar college setting, Liam has created a picture that is both popular and familiar.'

Judge: Barry Ginley

Original illustration for 'The Tale of Peter Rabbit’, Beatrix Potter. © Frederick Warne & Co. 2006

Original illustration for 'The Tale of Peter Rabbit’, Beatrix Potter. © Frederick Warne & Co. 2006

Liam Tasker, 'The Lake at Hinwick Hall College', Inspired by... 2007

Liam Tasker, 'The Lake at Hinwick Hall College', Inspired by... 2007

Gunilla Karlson with Ann Tozer

Gunilla Karlson with Ann Tozer

Metalwork and Jewellery Prize

Gunilla Karlson for Memory Protector

Memory Protector was made by Gunilla Karlson during her applied arts class at Kensington and Chelsea College.

Inspired by...

'Paris Window offers a visually complex surprise through the use of a mirror which questions our perception of depth, the fragmentation of space and ultimately reality, as we see it. This was the starting point of a research journey through optical illusions/reflections and distortions through mirrors and lenses.’

Judges' comments

'We chose the winner for metalwork because of its ingenuity and sensitive analysis of the work which inspired it. The winner has creatively combined an interpretation of the photograph with her own experiences. The result is an object truly in the spirit of the Inspired by… competition.'

Judges: Stephanie Seavers and Ann Tozer

Florence Henri, 'Paris Window', 1929. Museum no. Ph.269-1982

Florence Henri, 'Paris Window', 1929. Museum no. Ph.269-1982

Gunilla Karlson, 'Memory Protector', Inspired by... 2007

Gunilla Karlson, 'Memory Protector', Inspired by... 2007

Susan Parker-Leavy, 'Pop! Goes the Weasel', Inspired by... 2007

Susan Parker-Leavy, 'Pop! Goes the Weasel', Inspired by... 2007

Museum of Chilhood Prize

Susan Parker-Leavy for Pop! Goes the Weasel

Pop! Goes the Weasel was made by Susan Parker-Leavy during her Ceramics class at Morley College.

Inspired by...

‘I was inspired by the oldest Jack-in-the-Box in the collection, fun looking but also a little scary. My Jack-in-the-Box is a modern interpretation of both the topics of working life in London and trying to make ends meet.’

Judges' comments

'The judging panel agreed that Ms. Parker-Levy's artwork represented the strongest balance of inspiration, innovation, and technical skill. It was clear from the application that the project stretched her technical skills and has given her the confidence to now create 3-dimensional pieces. In addition to the technical accomplishment, we thought that her aim to make a statement about modern working life and drawing comparisons to the past gives the artwork an intellectual depth. We were also impressed by her research and the layers of planning that went into the creation of the artwork.'

Judges: Carolyn Chinn, Teresa Hare Duke and Catherine Howell

Jack-in-the-box, unknown, 1820-1850. Museum no. MISC.606-1992

Jack-in-the-box, unknown, 1820-1850. Museum no. MISC.606-1992

Susan Parker-Leavy, 'Pop! Goes the Weasel', Inspired by... 2007

Susan Parker-Leavy, 'Pop! Goes the Weasel', Inspired by... 2007

Kim Geyer with Lily Crowther

Kim Geyer with Lily Crowther

Asia Prize

Kim Geyer for Cards in a Box - Then and Now

Cards in a Box - Then and Now  was made by Kim Geyer during her illustration class at Putney School of Art and Design.

Inspired by...

‘The Modern Living section alongside the displays of ancient artefacts in the Chinese gallery threw up so many images of humour and beauty that I could see a narrative, and thought they might work well together in designing a full pack of playing cards inside a decorative box.’

Judges' comments

'Kim Geyer's Inspired by… entry was outstanding in many ways. She had clearly spent time looking at several objects in the V&A, and reflecting on how they related to one another visually and historically. Translating her inspirations into a pack of cards allowed her to incorporate lots of exciting ideas into a single, highly desirable object. The box was a great finishing touch, bringing the piece together and making it more coherent. Overall, we were impressed by the amount of thought and care that went into this detailed, elaborate piece of design.'

Judges: Lily Crowther and Rory Murphy

Ancestor Portrait of the Military Official General Lu Chian Kuei, Qing Dynasty, about 1755. Museum no. E.362-1956

Ancestor Portrait of the Military Official General Lu Chian Kuei, Qing Dynasty, about 1755. Museum no. E.362-1956

Kim Geyer, 'Cards in a Box - then and now', Inspired by... 2007

Kim Geyer, 'Cards in a Box - then and now', Inspired by... 2007

Deirdre Egerton-Smith with Richard Beard

Deirdre Egerton-Smith with Richard Beard

Winner of the Outstanding Commitment Richmond Adult Community College Award

Deirdre Egerton-Smith for Silver Spoon

Silver Spoon was made by Deirdre Egerton-Smith during her jewellery class at Richmond Adult Community College.

Inspired by...

‘I am inspired by the sinuous lines in the Japanese woodcuts, with the wonderful suggestion of flow and movement. The details on the hairpins, in the kimono decoration in the hems and on the dresses led to my ideas for a spoon.’

Judges' comments

'Deirdre has shown a thoughtful and committed approach to the challenge offered by the V&A's Inspired by... competition. Her work demonstrates a creative and inspired interpretation resulting in a sophisticated silverware design. We chose the winner for metalwork because of its ingenuity and sensitive analysis of the work which inspired it. Deirdre has creatively combined an interpretation of the photograph with her own experiences. The result is an object truly in the spirit of the Inspired by… competition.'

Judges: Marcella Montoya-Turnhill and Richard Beard

Deirdre Egerton-Smith, 'Silver Spoon', Inspired by... 2007

Deirdre Egerton-Smith, 'Silver Spoon', Inspired by... 2007

Torii Kiyomitsu II, 'The Angry Drinker', late 1810s. Museum no. E.5209-1886

Torii Kiyomitsu II, 'The Angry Drinker', late 1810s. Museum no. E.5209-1886

Dee Brien with Sue Prichard

Dee Brien with Sue Prichard

Fashion and Textiles Prize

Dee Brien for 21st Century Self Portrait

21st Century Self Portrait was made by Dee Brien Access/ Fine Art class at Portsmouth University.

Inspired by...

‘Having viewed the paintings in the V&A collection, I began to consider the idea of a 21st century portrait. I believe society has given us all a cloak of anonymity so that we are identified today by numbers. There is even a website that can supply your personal barcode. The one on the cushion is my personal barcode.’

Judges' comments

'We were particularly impressed by the way in which the artist has developed her theme. She has taken the concept of the unknown individual in portraiture and created a textile piece which is completely contemporary and relevant. Her exploration of the human condition, the increasing tendency of numbers to dominate our lives and suppress our individuality, has been explored to great effect. That the artist has chosen to use textiles as the medium to express her theme is a poignant reminder that so many of our wonderful textiles have been acquired without knowledge of their maker.'

Judges: Sue Prichard, Sarah Grant and Daniel Milford-Cottam

Dee Brien, '21st Century Self Portrait', Inspired by... 2007

Dee Brien, '21st Century Self Portrait', Inspired by... 2007

William Mulready, 'The Toy Seller', 1835. Museum no. FA.149[O]

William Mulready, 'The Toy Seller', 1835. Museum no. FA.149[O]

Paula Reason with Peter Layton

Paula Reason with Peter Layton

Glass Prize

Paula Reason for Top Love

Top Love was made by Paula Reason during her metal sculpture class at Morley College.

Inspired by...

‘The graphic image of LOVE by Robert Indiana, in the V&A collection, captured my imagination. I was intrigued how the letters and shapes would translate around the shape of the bodice and how the strong colours would work in the glass.’

Judges' comments

‘I was very impressed by the standard and commitment shown by the entries to this competition. Of the shortlisted entries, each had great merit, making it very hard to choose an outright winner. And I would have liked to have been able to award a second and third project, since some works scored more for potential, development or skill of execution than others. I really liked both the glass quilt and the modular screen and think these could be developed. The quality of light in the slumped piece was wonderful, and the fabric casting was executed most professionally.

I chose LOVE as the overall winner because although the method used was not new, the way it was used was both ingenious and highly successful. It was the most resolved and complete object , taking stained glass (Lampshade) techniques in a new and original direction. I enjoyed both the research and its referential quality, and the way in which the letters/ words were made to be read in a variety of ways. Congratulations on a fine effort all round.’

Judge: Peter Layton

Paula Reason, 'Top Love', Inspired by... 2007

Paula Reason, 'Top Love', Inspired by... 2007

'Love' (detail), Robert Indiana, 1967. Museum no. Circ.579-1968

'Love' (detail), Robert Indiana, 1967. Museum no. Circ.579-1968

Jacqueline Wyatt with Barry Norris

Jacqueline Wyatt with Barry Norris

Word and Image Prize & entrant of the year

Jacqueline Wyatt for Portrait of a Museum

Portrait of a Museum was made by Jacqueline Wyatt during her illustration class at Putney School of Art and Design.

Inspired by...

‘My work is inspired by the people who visit the V&A and what it is that they come to see. Each miniature portrait box contains a small object - a representation of a coveted "treasure" found in the museum, as unique and individual as the people who discover and delight in them.’

Judges' comments

This very imaginative work shows the artist's interest for both the museum objects and their beholders. Driven by a visit to our miniature portraits collection, art that flourished in England at the court of Henry VIII, Jacqueline Wyatt has adapted her inspiration to a more contemporary concept. She has marvellously combined the media of painting with small sculptures hidden in these treasure boxes, by making our experience of her art a sort of game. Her work invites us to open the boxes and discover each little object associated with the sitter. Reminiscent of the work of artists like Holly Frean, Wyatt has moved from there and proposes an interesting combination of the media which makes her work very attractive.'
Statement by Ketty Gottardo

Judges: Anne Marie Bilclough, Catherine Flood, Charlotte Holmes, Mor Thunder, Ketty Gottardo, Abraham Thomas and Natasha Jacoby

Image of V&A visitors © Jacqueline Wyatt

Image of V&A visitors © Jacqueline Wyatt

Jacqueline Wyatt, 'Portrait of a Museum', Inspired by... 2007

Jacqueline Wyatt, 'Portrait of a Museum', Inspired by... 2007

Entrant of the year

Jacqueline Wyatt with Ketty Gottardo

Jacqueline Wyatt with Ketty Gottardo

'NIACE's choice for the V&A Inspired by... entrant of the year is Jacqueline Wyatt for her work 'Portrait of a Museum'. The panel were very impressed not only by the quality of her work but also by the way she seemed to revel in the learning environment while creating the piece: sharing ideas and inspiration with her fellow learners. It was felt by the judges that Jacqueline had portrayed the real wealth and importance not only of museums but also of the learning experiences that can take place within them.'

Judges: Barry Norris, Claire Woodward and Rachel Thomson

A prize was also awarded to Carolyn Dinan, illustration tutor at Kensington & Chelsea College and Putney School of Art for the most inspiring tutor.

The National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) offered £100 in vouchers towards the Benefit of Learning winner.

The display

These images are from the Inspired By... display 2007.

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