Mental health, a dog in a gallery and ever-evolving museums: Rankin on the Art Fund Museum of the Year photo finalists

| 18 June 2016 | Updated: 17 June 2016

In the photography competition for this year’s Art Fund Museum of the Year prize, leading photographer Rankin has picked one image of each finalist museum from hundreds of entries. Who will you choose in the public vote?

A black and white photo of a girl jumping into the air at Jupiter Artland in Scotland
Jupiter Artland, West Lothian, by Graeme Hutton

Rankin: “This Charles Jencks installation – the Cells of Life – is the perfect backdrop for a gentle but alive photo, full of life and human interaction. The ability to interact and breathe your own existence into a museum is a valuable thing – these are ever-evolving beasts and we should be able to play our part in that.”

A photo of a man holding a sign showing a mental health message at Bethlem Museum
Bethlem Museum of the Mind, London, by Jodine Williams

Rankin: “Mental health is such an important issue and something we could all do with learning more about. This photograph is a stripped back and candid reflection of that. I think it is brilliant that a museum and hospital is focusing on depicting something that affects all our lives in this way. I want to be involved in working with Bethlem in the future.”

A photo of a pair of hands around a sculpture at York Art Gallery
York Art Gallery, by Adele Karmazyn

Rankin: “I’d definitely be up for visiting York Art Gallery and giving this a go. The grandeur of the background against the tomfoolery of the foreground reflects different parts, and eras, of humanity. I really believe interaction with art is important – it helps make it accessible and lets us understand and feel its full power.”

A photo of a dog standing outside the doors of Arnolfini gallery in Bristol
Arnolfini, Bristol by Colin Moody

Rankin: “I am a dog lover so that swung it for me. The fact that all of these photographs are focused on human and animal interaction is a telling sign. I have always believed art should be democratic – it can be enjoyed by all: adults, children, even animals. I just hope someone let him in for a look.”

A black and white photo of a woman standing outside the Victoria & Albert Museum, London
Victoria and Albert Museum, London, by Leah McIntosh

  • The public vote runs until June 29 2016. Winner announced on July 1. Voters will be entered into a prize draw for the chance to win a double National Art Pass, the Art Fund’s membership.

Images copyright the artists.


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Take a look at the five finalists in this year's Museum of the Year competition.
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