From Friday 19 October, the Tower of London is offering aspiring artists, successful sketchers and dextrous doodlers of all ages the chance to enter a fantastic and unique nationwide drawing competition. This competition is deliberately timed for what is for many schools and students the start of the October half term, to encourage UK residents of all ages and abilities to take part. Find out more and how to enter at www.hrp.org.uk/drawn.
The lucky winner will see their drawing realised on the scaffolding of the East face of the 90ft high, 107ft wide iconic White Tower during 2008, as crucial work to clean and conserve its 1000 year old brick work for future generations takes place underneath. No other building captures the imagination of its nation and the world at large and it is rare, if not unprecedented, to take the bold step of inviting the public to put their stamp on a historic building in this way. Their work will be seen by the 2 million people that visit the Tower each year as well as countless millions of Londoners and tourists. Also, in order to develop their talent, the winner will also enjoy £200 worth of tuition at The Prince’s Drawing School.
We are looking for just one drawing which captures the drama, intrigue and significance of the stories and history of the White Tower, which was started by William the Conqueror in 1078 and has played a central role in British history ever since.
We encourage all ages to take part, because we are not looking purely for technical skill, but also for a drawing that is inspired by the White Tower's unique place at the heart of British history, tells our stories in a visually compelling way, and exploits the role of the White Tower today not only as the home of unique royal arms and armour including that of Henry VIII and part of the Tower of London World Heritage Site, but also, as the world looks forward to London 2012, as a symbol of Britain.
The competition closes on Monday 14 January 2008 and the winner will be announced on Monday 10 March 2008. The winning drawing, realised in situ on the East face of the White Tower, will be unveiled in late March 2008.
Dan Snow, historian and broadcaster, commented: “This is a fantastic opportunity for people across the UK to get under the skin of the Tower of London, one of our greatest royal palaces and a magnificent fortress. Its stories cover prisoners, murders, ghosts and legends, kings and queens, births, marriages, deaths; many of the defining moments of our nation’s story happened at the Tower of London. Who wouldn’t be inspired by such a wealth of history!”
Major General Keith Cima, Resident Governor of the Tower of London, explained: “The White Tower at the Tower of London represents 1000 years of defining moments but also 1000 years of weathering and corrosion. Crucial work to clean and conserve three faces of the White Tower will take place from 2008 – 2011, to deliver the appearance and condition the UK expects for one of its most iconic landmarks in time for the 2012 Olympics, at a total cost of nearly £2million. As an independent charity with no funding from the Government or the Crown, we hope this competition will capture the imagination of the British public, but also raise the profile of this expensive but crucial conservation work with individuals and organisations who can help us.”
The competition is open to anyone living, studying and working in the UK and UK citizens living and working abroad. An initial shortlist of 40 candidates will be selected for consideration by the panel, which includes:
Michael Day, Chief Executive, Historic Royal Palaces
Major General Keith Cima, Resident Governor, Tower of London
Dan Snow, historian and broadcaster
Catherine Goodman, Artistic Director, The Prince’s Drawing School