The Barclays L’Atelier art awardsprovides an opportunity for young artists  aged  21 to 35 to exhibit their talent, bare their souls and reach their dreams of becoming internationally recognised artists.

As a financial institution that endeavours to help people achieve their ambitions, Barclays Africaappreciates that art contributes to the creative and intellectual wealth of the country. We have invested in the arts for many years and are now the custodians of one of the largest corporate art collections in South Africa and internationally.

TheBarclays L’Ateliercompetition isregarded as one of the leading and most comprehensive art awards across the African continent, commissioning and rewarding artists from Botswana, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

The primary aim of the Barclays L’Atelier is to identify young talent in the visual arts arena to nurture, develop and grow this talent.

The competition pays homage to both established and emerging young artists and their compelling artistic vision.The competition is currently in its 31styear and registration for new entries is now open. Barclays Africa, with its partner, SANAVA (South African National Association for the Visual Arts), has sponsored the competition since its inception.

The fact that the competition is running for more than three decades is testimony to its prominenceon the African arts calendar. The competition has been instrumental in launching manycareers in the visual arts industry.

The Barclays L’Atelierhas therefore become a key platform for artists to showcase their work.Thereafter,the identified artists are nurtured, promoted and sponsored through the Absa Gallery in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The main drawcard for any artist entering the competition is the opportunity to travel abroadon all-expenses paid arts residency to help refine and fine-tune their artistic acumen. For the overall winner, there is also the added incentive of a solo exhibition at the Absa Gallery.

The top ten finalists are placed on an art professionalism course to assist them in navigating their careers, and thereafter, paired with a mentor in the visual arts field who will work with them for the next 12 months.

All artists who are selected for the final top 100 will form part of a national exhibition at the Absa Gallery.They all receive prominent coverage in a catalogue that is widely distributed.

For further information on this year’s competition, those wishing to enter or to be part of the regional and national exhibitions are encouraged to visit

Registration for new entries is now open.