The “Heroism and Hubris” Competition Winners


Last month we ran our second competition, asking for artistic responses to the theme(s) of heroism and hubris in the Classical world. The judges were thrilled to receive a brilliant array of beautiful and inventive efforts from readers spread across five continents. We could go on and on about what we liked the most, and what we enjoyed interpreting and debating, but we’ll spare you our wranglings and instead cut to the chase.

As you may recall, we divided the competition into two age categories. So let’s begin with the future. The wonderful winner of the Under 18 category is Ilvy Paierl, a 16-year-old student from Graz, Austria. Her composition, based ingeniously upon Roman mural designs, retold the myth of Phaethon, son of the Sun (Helios), whose heroic hubris quite literally set the world on fire (click for a more detailed image below, or visit our Articles page).

We are delighted to send £250 Austriawards: well done, Ilvy!

Inevitably, there were many excellent runners-up, and we were sorry to have only one prize available. Some of the best can be found in the gallery below (click for details). And how exciting it was to see our youngest entrant, eight-year-old Zelong Huang, introduce Latin and Greek to his timeline of Theseus!

Onwards we go, then, to the fully-fledged adults. We had a much larger field, here, full of all manner of mind-bending talent. After hours of Zoomage, and three weekend summits at the Holiday Inn South Normanton, the judges managed at length to hammer out a decision.

The winner, of the Over 18 category is Cora Beth Fraser of the UK. Remember that name! The judges were delighted by her channelling the one-book-too-far bravery of the cat into the handsome frame of a classic bookplate. So many details made us smile (check out the book choices!), not least the adaptation of the mantra sung by the chorus of Sophocles’ Antigone: “Many are the wonders, and none is more wondrous than the cat.” We’re delighted to ping her some well-deserved dosh: euge, euge, Cora Beth!

Running up close – eheu! quam proxime accedens! – was this beautiful and haunting portrait from Afonso Lardosa, of Porto, Portugal:

Among the many other splendid nearly-wons, we have selected the following images as particularly impressive (again, do click for details):

Congratulations to our brace of winners and to all of our highly commended entries: your work is genuinely amazing and we are very proud to host it. Our commiserations and apologies to the many other entrants who took to the time to take on the challenge; we hope that you enjoyed tackling the topic. Remember, you can always sell your art to a neighbour or admirer!

At any rate, our next competition will swing round in the Autumn, so do keep one or more eyes open for that!