Manchester Open 2022 Award Design by George Fell

This year’s awards have been designed and constructed by Manchester Open 2020 People’s Choice Award George Fell.  

In 2020, George Fell’s sculpture, Octopus, captured the hearts of hundreds of visitors who nominated his work for the People’s Choice Award.

George Fell, Octopus, 2020

George Fell’s artistic practice developed through working with his father, the sculptor Brian Fell, who taught him how to work with steel. The physicality of handling this material is an important part of Fell’s practice enabling him to capture the character and intricacy of his subjects.

The repetitive techniques and patience involved in his making process are informed by his work as a musician. Playing to audiences for many years sparked a desire to create sculptures that ‘perform’ to their viewers. Working in partnership with Brian Fell at a studio in Yorkshire Sculpture Park, they have created many artworks that are permanently sited around the UK. 

Concept drawing for Manchester Open Award 2022 by George Fell

“Winning the People’s Choice Award at the Manchester Open was so gratifying, it was amazing to think that my work stood out to visitors amongst such a vibrant collection of artworks. Being recognised in this way made me view my own artistic practice more seriously and with greater confidence.

The personal development programme with Castlefield Gallery, that formed part of the award, set me up with mentors who provided me with refreshing new ways I could approach my work and insightful advice for the future.

The award statues are small architectural geometric forms inspired by the aesthetics of the HOME building. They are made in sheet steel using a combination of sheet and rods. The material has been cut to size with a plasma cutter, formed by hand then welded together to create the structure. The surface is then be fettled and polished with angle grinders to give it a brushed satin finish. 

The Manchester Open 2022 exhibition opens Mon 24 Jan – Sun 27 Mar 2022. Click here to find out more.