22 October 2020:


The Ashmolean and The Oxford Times are thrilled to announce the winners of The Artists in Residence Competition.  Their work will go on display in the Museum Atrium from 24 October:



Wilkie Metz-Moser, age 8
for his painting, View from my window

Nina Davis, age 6
for her drawing, Garden Treehouse

Isaac Finley, age 10
for his drawing, I Hate this Lockdown


AGE 11–17

Ellen Clay, age 14
for her drawing and watercolour, The Person I miss the Most


Tabitha Budgen, age 12
for her watercolour, Angels

Archie Johnston, age 16
for his painting, Overwhelm


AGE 18+

Stefan Tiburcio
for his woodcut on plywood, Stay At Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives

Aizat Kamaruzaman 
for his photograph, Waiting for Better Days

Ruth Swain 
for her painting, Essentials


People were asked to create artistic responses to coronavirus and the lockdown, reflecting on their experiences, things they missed and moments of hope.  Running from May-July, the competition received nearly 1200 entries from across the UK.  People sent in a huge range of artworks including paintings, drawings and photographs, collage, sculpture, video, mosaics and textiles.  Strong themes emerged: gratitude to key workers and the NHS; the importance of friends and family; appreciation of the natural world; and the deep impact of the Black Lives Matter movement.

The competition was judged by:

  • Lizzie Collins, Director, Zuleika Gallery, Oxford & London
  • Tim Hughes, Audience & Content Editor, The Oxford Times
  • Dr Kamal Mahtani, GP and Associate Professor, Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine, Oxford University
  • Janina Ramirez, cultural historian, broadcaster and Course Director at Oxford University’s Department for Continuing Education
  • Xa Sturgis, Director of the Ashmolean


Lizzie Collins says: ‘The Artists in Residence submissions demonstrate how important art has been to people during this difficult time. It was wonderful to see amazing creativity and positivity pouring out through artwork.'

Dr Kamal Mahtani says: ‘It was an absolute delight to be able to review the entries in this competition. The standard of work was way beyond my expectations for what is a difficult time for the population.  Those that were placed in the runner-up positions should be incredibly proud of their efforts amidst such strong competition. The winning entries are truly worthy of their accolades, with the feeling, emotion and meaning behind each picture particularly moving.’

Dr Janina Ramirez says: ‘When I was asked to be a judge for this competition I knew it would bring in an interesting array of entries but I wasn't prepared for the quantity and quality of the submissions! It was a cornucopia of riches with every entry worthy. The finalists all give an insight into what this year has been like to live through and they will act as artistic records for the future. It was an honour to be involved.’

Xa Sturgis says: ‘We were overwhelmed by the entries to our competition and had to sift through hundreds of creative and imaginative responses to our collective experience of the last nine months. The works ranged from the witty and optimistic, to the heartfelt and moving and all bear testimony to the profound way in which recent events have shifted how we see our world, ourselves and those around us.  Looking through all the entries was pure pleasure, choosing our winners a struggle, but I am thrilled by the range of our winners and above all by the strong yet varied emotions they reflect and engender.’

The finalists’ artwork will be on display in the Ashmolean Atrium from 23 October 2020-January 2021.  The runners-up have been awarded a range of Ashmolean treats; and the winners in each category will enjoy a celebration afternoon tea in the Ashmolean restaurant and a tour of one its 2021 exhibitions.

A larger selection of entries to the competition is available to view online at and in The Oxford Times and Oxford Mail




The Artists in Residence competition was made possible thanks to the generous support of our media partner:


The Oxford Times




Banner images, from left:

Wilkie Metz-Moser, age 8
View from my window

Ellen Clay, age 14 
The Person I miss the Most
Drawing and watercolour

Stefan Tiburcio
Stay At Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives
Woodcut on plywood