Maltings Art Prize Awards Ceremony

‘Natural Form’ & ‘Literature’

A competition designed to support and encourage the development of art skills from the students of St Albans based schools.

The judging is now complete and finalists have been notified.  The Awards Ceremony takes place on Wednesday 27th September 2023 at OVO at the Matings Theatre and we look forward to seeing the finalists, their family and teachers.

Competition Theme and Materials

There are two themes to choose from this year: Natural Form’ and ‘Literature’.

Natural Form

A natural form is an object found in nature that has not been changed or altered.  It is still in its natural state. For example, flowers, leaves, seedpods, bones, skeletons, feathers, birds, fish, animals etc. in fact anything you can find in nature – complete or part of it.

The flowing lines within a natural form are often more forgiving than a manmade object.

Example:  Sophie Munns

Australian artist Sophie Munns is a great artist to use in the art classroom.  Her obsession with seeds has spanned decades.  She creates drawings in a wide range of media, beautiful artist books with simple construction methods and they all ooze with wonderful colours and textures.

“When we observe seeds and their capsules closely through the camera lens, magnifying glass or naked eye it’s astonishing the details, structures & textures that become visible to the eye through focus.” – Sophie Munns


What is the connection between literature and other art forms?

Art and literature are closely connected.  There are many paintings based on literary works and vice versa. Literature and art are also often part of the same broader artistic movements, expressing similar themes and ideas.

What are the definitions of art and literature?

Essentially, it is any creative expression in any number of mediums, including visual arts, painting, sculpture, film, music, and literature.  Literature refers to any creative written work, including poetry, novels, and short stories.

Artwork can be linked to, and portray a poem for example.

Think about using verses and phrases from a piece of literature (short story, poem, novel) in the artwork by utilising text or calligraphy.  Or the artwork could depict an image that represents a piece of literature.

Entrants produced a piece of 2D artwork or 3D ceramics on one of the above themes.

Acceptable Media

  • Pencil
  • Ink
  • Watercolour
  • Acrylic paints
  • Oil pastel
  • Chalk pastels BUT only if fully fixed
  • Ceramics

Not allowed: Prints or photographs. Work should be properly fixed.

 Who can take part?

This competition was open to all schools within St Albans.  The age range for competitors was:

Group One

  • Year 13 age 17 – 18
  • Year 12 age 16 – 17

Group Two

  • Year 11 age 15 – 16
  • Year 10 age 14 – 15
  • Year 9 age 13 – 14

Group Three

  • Year 8 age 12 – 13
  • Year 7 age 11 – 12
  • Year 6 age 10 – 11

Group Four

  • Year 5 age 9 – 10
  • Year 4 age 8 – 9
  • Year 3 age 7 – 8

Group Five

  • Year 2 age 6 – 7
  • Year 1 age 5 – 6
  • Year R age 4 – 5


This competition aims to encourage young people to:

  • Experiment with creativity within art
  • Use traditional or contemporary methods of art
  • Show interpretation of the competition theme
  • Express their ideas through the medium of art


£1000 – Winning entry’s School Art Department

£250 – Overall winner

Trophy for finalists in each of the 5 groups

Trophy for overall winner