The Batsford Prize is an annual competition open to art students across the UK. Entrants to this year’s award responded to the theme ‘At Peace’. There were 28 entries shortlisted across four categories, Applied Arts and Textiles, Fine Art, Illustration and Children’s Illustration.
Judged by industry professionals, Alivia Hoy’s ‘Mattress’ was crowned the overall winner across the categories and was awarded an additional £300 cash prize. Alivia’s entry ‘Mattress’ is an acrylic painting of an older person on the surface of a baby's cot mattress.
Describing her work, Alivia said: “The older person acts as a record of time, reflecting on those interactions from birth to old age. This is supported through the blank watch on the subject's wrist, showing the non-existence of time or perhaps the lack of time left. Despite the abundant connotations of mattresses, ultimately this piece displays a vulnerable and honest connection that we share with our bed.
“Within my practice, each domestic item I paint on is a commercially mass-produced object which has been repurposed into an agent of subjectivity.”