About the Prize

The Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize was founded by Sue Ecclestone of Ecclestone Art as part of a wider project to assist and celebrate women artists and focus on the careers of emerging female painters.

Judy Clarkson Winner 2018
Louise Saward Winner 2019
Previous first prize winners of the Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize, Judy Clarkson (left) won in 2018 and Louise Saward (right) won the prize in 2019.




This Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize is aimed at supporting, encouraging and mentoring emerging women painters. Each year 22 artists are chosen from a competition to exhibit at Burgh House, Hampstead, London. From these 22 talented women the first prize is awarded to a painter who has demonstrated exceptional potential to become an established professional artist. 

The exhibition offers a genuine opportunity for emerging women artists to further their career and for art collectors to invest in the future of the art-world’s emerging talent.

Our past finalists have said:

  • Winning the prize gave them greater financial independence, enabling them to invest in materials, studio space and models

  • That winning and exhibiting with the prize has resulted in further exhibition opportunities and opportunities to promote their work.

  • The prize offers a sense of community. Meeting other female artists at the prize-giving and private view offers the experience to exchange ideas and life experiences in an inspiring environment.

  • Participating in the prize has helped boost their confidence at the beginning of their careers.

  • The prize offers an opportunity for women to exhibit their work professionally for the first time.

Now in our fourth year of delivering the prize, we have seen many of past winners and finalists go on to find great opportunities in their creative careers. We have also established a network of talented woman painters who benefit from each other's expertise and friendship.

Ecclestone Art  - All About Art and Artists

Ecclestone Art provides services to the art industry such as curation, research and writing. The agency has been responsible for delivering numerous exhibitions for artists, as well as taking on writing and media projects. Ecclestone Art helps artists to promote their work by highlighting artwork on all their associated social media platforms and curating exhibitions to help artists sell their creations and gain recognition. 


Ecclestone Art founded the Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize in 2017 as part of their ongoing commitment to supporting emerging woman painters.

In 2019, Ecclestone Art opened Lilac Cottage Studio in Suffolk where they provide a range of art lessons for all abilities. Lilac Cottage Studio is a purpose equipped building located in the garden of Sue Ecclestone's lovely country cottage. All the tutors are professional artists with plenty of experience of teaching and each has their own special skills and genre to share with our clients.


For more information about Ecclestone Art's range of services, visit our website: https://www.ecclestoneartagency.com
​For details about the courses on offer at Lilac Cottage Studio, visit: 

Our Team

Sue  Ecclestone, Founder and Director

Sue Ecclestone founded and runs Ecclestone Art and The Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize. Sue has a First Class B.A. Honours degree in History of Art from the University of East Anglia where she won the Arthur Batchelor Award for the best dissertation in her year. Sue gained her postgraduate degree from University College London, receiving a distinction for her dissertation surrounding Contemporary African Art.

Sue's passion is Art and Artists and she loves nothing more than to help good artists work towards fulfilling their artistic aims and potential. 

Emily Curran, Prize Assistant and Digital Lead

Emily Curran is a recent graduate of University College London, with a BA in Philosophy and History of Art. Emily has worked for several organisations that aim to make visual art accessible to a wide audience, and believes that art is great vehicle for social change.

Emily has assisted Sue in running The Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize 2020 by running the prize's social media accounts and building a new website for this year.

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Copyright of artwork rests with the artists and may only be used with their permission.