Yell artist wins BP Fine Art Award

Amy Gear from Yell, a final-year printmaking student at Robert Gordon University’s Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen, has received the prestigious BP Fine Art Award at the 127th annual degree show.

Amy, 22, has created a series of large-scale prints inspired by the traditional languages and customs of Shetland. The judges were particularly impressed by her work, which also aims to preserve elements of island poetry and folklore for future generations.

She will graduate in the summer with a BA (Hons) in Printmaking and was presented with the trophy together with a cheque for £500 by BP’s regional president of North Sea, Trevor Garlick, at a special ceremony at the launch of the show.

Tim Smith, vice-president of communications and external affairs for BP Scotland, said: “BP is delighted to continue our sponsorship of the Gray’s School of Art degree show for the seventh year. Once again we have been impressed by the creativity and quality of the students’ work. This made the judging for the BP Design Award and BP Fine Art Award both very difficult and very enjoyable.”

Amy combines fabrics including silk with screen-printing to create textured pieces. Her exhibition included prints and fabric installations.

She won the Cross Trust Award at the end of her third year, which allowed her to further her studies of Nordic cultures and she chose to go to Iceland. Amy said: “This trip greatly influenced my work in my final year.”

Her work also incorporates the organic elements of living in a remote island. Certain pieces represent abstract versions of the island landscape and weather. For example, one of her pieces is a 3m high fabric wall hanging depicting a rain shower over the Yell landscape.

As well as the BP Fine Art Award, Amy’s work was selected by the Royal Scottish Academy as part of its “New Contemporaries” exhibition and she had a piece purchased for £500 for the University’s permanent art and heritage collections.

This is not the first such accolade for the Gear family as Amy’s elder brother Daniel received the BP Design Award in 2010 for his work on the debate about windfarm developments in Shetland.

Amy has accepted an Artist in Residence for Printmaking next year at Grays.


Add Your Comment

Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.