About Young Artists
The Young Artist Awards, sponsored by Standard Bank, are presented by the National Arts Festival Committee to emerging, relatively young South African artists who have demonstrated exceptional ability in their chosen fields but who have not yet achieved national exposure and acclaim.
Festival Committee members, fellow artists and interested members of the public, nominate artists. The Festival Committee, comprising established professionals from the various arts disciplines, decides on the final recipients.
Designed to encourage the recipients in the pursuit of their careers, a key aspect of the awards is that they guarantee the artists a place on the main programme of the next National Arts Festival.
Apart from a cash prize, each of the winners receive substantial financial backing for their Festival participation, whether this involves the mounting of an exhibition or the staging of a production.
A maximum of six awards are made annually in any one of the disciplines of drama, music, jazz, visual art, performance art, dance and film. Since the inception of the awards in 1981 over 100 awards have been presented plus five special awards to artists in recognition of their contribution to the National Arts Festival and the arts of South Africa.
See the 2017 winners profiles below…