The Josef Herman Award – The People’s Choice was awarded to the winner of the Gold Medal for Craft and Design at the Anglesey 2017 National Eisteddfod of Wales.
Following the count, it was announced that the artist Julia Griffiths Jones hate received the greatest number of votes for her wire installation ‘Room within a Room’ in Y Lle Celf. This is the seventh occasion, since the establishment of the prize in 1995, that the public has concurred with the selectors’ decision and chosen one of the gold medal winners.
With the support of the Josef Herman Art Foundation Cymru £500 is awarded to the artist that has created the most popular work or collection of works in the Open Exhibition. The public is invited to view the work carefully before voting for their favourite work. Be it ceramic, textiles or painting, the public sometimes agree with the selectors and vote for one of the winners of the Gold Medal for Fine Art or Craft and Design. Other times, the people chose a completely different winner. Whatever the result, it encourages the public to engage with the artworks and take ownership of Y Lle Celf.
The award was established at the Bro Colwyn 1995 National Eisteddfod of Wales following a suggestion by art specialist Miles Wynn Cato – a member of Daniel’s Club, London. The fist ever award was financed by the members of the club established by Welsh lawyers in the 18th century. Since 2008 the award has been sponsored by the Josef Herman Art Foundation Cymru and in 2011 was renamed the Josef Herman Award – The People’s Choice. This is a fitting association as the Gold Medal for Fine Art was awarded to Josef Herman for his contribution to art in Wales and beyond at the National Eisteddfod held at Llanelli in 1962.