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The Art of Innovation - Entries now open for Sasol New Signatures 2021

Posted on 27 May 2021

Entries are now officially open for the annual Sasol New Signatures Art Competition 2021. Being the longest-running competition of its kind in South Africa, Sasol New Signatures has become a platform for unknown artists to break into the mainstream art stage. Sasol has sponsored this important art competition for over 30 years and has launched the careers of many household names in art currently working in South Africa and globally.

"The Sasol New Signatures Art Competition is not just another art competition," said Pfunzo Sidogi, Chairperson of Sasol New Signatures. "It is an enabler for emerging artists to not only expand the possibilities of art but also to inspire innovation and change."

The competition is open to all South African artists over 18 years who have not yet held a solo exhibition. Artists who have held a solo exhibition for academic purposes (a Master's degree exhibition) are allowed to enter. Artists can submit up to 2 artworks in all artistic mediums, including photography, performance art, video and installations.

"With the advent of Covid-19, there is a greater need for innovators and creators to shape the world anew and inspire change. Taking on this challenge, the 2021 Sasol New Signatures Art Competition has created a space for eligible emerging artists to imagine, transgress, transcend, disrupt, and innovate through their creativity," Sidogi added.

Lebohang Kganye (2017 winner), Still from Ke sale teng, Animated film, 202 seconds

Sasol New Signatures is not only about art but also education.

Since 2001, the competition has hosted information sessions for potential entrants. These detailed sessions to give entrants much needed technical information regarding format, size, media and layout of entered works as well as valuable advice regarding the presentation of competition standard work.

This year, due to COVID-19, the information session will be hosted online and will go live on the 7 June 2021 on numerous virtual platforms and will be available for viewing on an ongoing basis until final artwork submissions.

Contemporary, innovative and emerging artists with winning aspirations are invited to submit their artworks at one of several collection points around the country between 7 - 8 September 2021.

The winner will be announced on 10 November 2021 and will receive R100 000 and a solo exhibition at next year's exhibition. The winning works will also be displayed at the Pretoria Art Museum from 11 November 2021 - 9 January 2022. The runner up will receive R25 000 and the five merit award winners will each walk away with R10 000.

Patrick Rulore (2019 winner), Stage 4 moments, Oil on canvas, 101 cm x 122 cm

The 2019 Sasol New Signatures winner, Patrick Rulore, will hold his first solo exhibition within the official Sasol New Signatures 2021 exhibition. The exhibition is titled "Life in Darkness". Rulore explores his fascination with the human figure and he attempts to capture the complexity of the body and the enigmatic power which human beings possess.

For more information on competition, information sessions and drop off points visit

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