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Richard Schlagman Art Book Awards

Hosted by Whitechapel Gallery in partnership with the Authors’ Club

Whitechapel Gallery and the Authors’ Club are delighted to announce the Richard Schlagman Art Book Awards, eight prestigious new annual awards celebrating the best in international arts publishing in the English language.

The Awards are named after influential arts publisher, Richard Schlagman, whose vision and drive transformed and revived Phaidon Press as a world class publisher, revolutionising the sector of arts publishing for modern and contemporary art. This new initiative highlights the fertile relationship between the art world and publishing, recognising a diverse genre that encompasses art, architecture and design. It celebrates the importance of books in the dissemination of knowledge and learning about art around the world, addressing a vital need to champion the visual arts publishing sector. The Awards also celebrate the innovation and verve of contemporary graphic design and print production.

The award categories are as follows:

1. Book of the Year – overall winner
2. Best Contribution to Art History
3. Best Book on Contemporary Art
4. Best Contribution to Architectural History
5. Best Book on Contemporary Architecture
6. Best Contribution to Design History
7. Best Book on Contemporary Design
8. Best Book Design

Whitechapel Gallery invites submissions for all categories (except “Book of the Year”) between 22 January and 31 March 2019. There is no entry fee.

Winners for each award will be decided by a Jury comprising a panel of seven with three permanent members. The permanent Jury will select four new expert members each year.

The awards will be given at the London Art Book Fair on 5 September 2019.

Please fill in this application form to submit your publications.


1. Is my book eligible?

Books may be submitted by publishers worldwide, including academic, commercial, museum and gallery publishers and small independent presses.

The publications must be in English or with a full English translation.

Entries must be submitted by the publisher only. Entries via agents or third parties are invalid and will not be considered.

2. Is there a fee to take part in the competition?

No, the submission is free.

3. How do I submit a book?

All entries must be supplied digitally via the online application form, as a high-resolution PDF, 300 dpi, double-page spreads.

Submissons by email or post will not be accepted.

Each publisher may submit an unlimited number of outstanding titles to each Award category. For each title one application form must be filled in. One title may be submitted in more than one category, therefore one application form must be filled in per category.

4. How do the Richard Schlagman Art Book Awards work?

The Jury is chaired by Richard Schlagman, with two other permanent members from Whitechapel Gallery and the Authors’ Club. They are joined by four experts in each of the categories, changing annually. You can read about the 2019 Jury here.

All entries for each category will be forwarded to an internal judging panel, who will select an internal longlist.

Longlisted publishers will be contacted by email in mid-April 2019 and required to send two physical copies of the publications they have applied with to Whitechapel Gallery. These copies will be shared with the Jury.

Physical copies will not be returned but donated to the MMAG Foundation in Amman, Jordan.

In May the seven-member-jury will select the shortlist which will be published on this website in June 2019.

All publishers whose entries are shortlisted will be invited by Wednesday, 19 June 2019 to attend an awards ceremony in London on 5 September 2019 at which the winners will be announced.

5. What is the prize?

Each winner will receive a specially designed trophy.

The prizes are non-transferable and no cash alternative will be offered.

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