1 August
oil painting brushes

August competitions checked by Arts Law

Arts Law has checked the terms and conditions of 17 competitions closing in August 2014.

5 competitions  were awarded an encouraging 4 / 5 stars for fairness to artists! Under the terms and conditions of all these competitions, a licence to reproduce the work for the limited purpose of promoting the competition is only requested from shortlisted entrants or finalists rather than all entrants. A clear limitation on the duration of the licence and a positive intention to attribute the artists would have given these prizes a perfect score of 5 / 5 stars for fairness.


·         John Leslie Art Prize – deadline 2 August 2014

·         Meroogal Women’s Art Prize – deadline 9 August 2014

·         Grace Cossington Smith Art Award – deadline 16 August 2014

·         Doug Moran National Portrait Prize 2014 – deadline 16 August 2014

·         The Paul Guest Prize 2014 – deadline 23 August 2014


3 competitions received a commendable 3 / 5 stars for fairness.  Under these terms and conditions, all entrants are asked to provide a licence to the competition organisers to reproduce their works for purposes associated with the competition. None of the competitions set a limit to the duration of the licence requested from the entrants.

A special mention should go to the Northern Territory Parliament who made a very positive undertaking to acknowledge the artist as the creator of the work at all times.


·         Portrait of a Senior Territorian Art Award – deadline 19 August 2014

·         Blake Art Prize 2014 – deadline 30 August 2014  

·         Clayton Utz Art Award – deadline 30 August 2014


4 competitions scored 2 /5 stars for fairness to artists. Thesecompetitions asks that all entrants grant to the competition organisers a licence to reproduce the entries for broad purposes beyond the scope of promotion for the competition.  Best practice would be for these licences to be limited to finalists/exhibitors, limited in uses, limited in duration and create a positive intention to attribute the artists.


·         Sculpture by the Sea Cottesloe – deadline 16 August 2014

·         JADA Jacaranda Acquisitive Drawing Award – deadline 2 August 2014

·         BHP Biliton Cannington Waltzing Matilda Photographic Competition – deadline 9 August 2014

·         Eutick Memorial Still Life Award 2014 – deadline 23 August 2014

·         Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award 2014 – deadline 16 August 2014


5 competitions have received 0 / 5 stars. Arts Law was not able to rate these competitions as further information was needed. The M Collection Award, Springwood Art Show and the Overland Victoria University Short Story prizes do not specifically mention licensing the winner’s copyright or the protection of their moral rights. Either the competition organisers do not intend to reproduce the entries or they haven’t considered the permission they need from entrants to reproduce the work.

The Great Aussie Book Prize offers a publishing contract to the winner however, the terms of that contract do not appear to be available to people who are considering entering the competition. While the organiser will eventually provide the winner with this information, it would be preferable for all entrants to know the details of what they are competing for. Arts Law believe that artists should know what they may have to agree to in advance before they spend time on creating a submission.

The Koori Court Art Competition note that winners will be required to complete a licence agreement if they win but do not make those terms available to entrants now. Arts Law considers it best practice for entrants to be aware of what terms they are required to agree to before they submit an entry. 


·         M Collection Award 2014 – deadline 9 August 2014  

·         Springwood Art Show 2014 – deadline 14 August

·         Overland Victoria University Short Story Prize for New and Emerging Writers – deadline 31 August 2014

·         Great Aussie Book Prize – deadline 31 August 2014

·         Koori Court Art Competition – deadline 31 August 2014


If the Organiser of a prize or competition would like Arts Law to review its terms for fairness to artists and provide best practice advice, please contact [email protected]

Please also email us to tell us about any competitions or prizes you think we should check. 

For more about Arts Law's campaign to improve competition terms and conditions, view our Prizes and Competitionssection and Arts Law's competition star rating system.