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UK’s first LGBTQ museum unveils 2024 Madame F Queer Britain Art Award winner

An "idealised scene of Brighton's infamous cruising area" was the big winner at last night's ceremony and is now on display at Queer Britain

By Jamie Tabberer

The exterior of Queer Britain, and winners of last night's contes
The exterior of Queer Britain, and winners of last night's contest (Images: John Sturrock/provided)

Tony Mentel has been announced as the winner of this years’ Madame F Queer Britain Art Award.

His work View from Dukes Mound [below] is now on display at Queer Britain, the UK’s first national LGBTQ+ museum, in London’s Granary Square. Mentel will receive a cash prize of £1500 for his win.

A reception to mark the occasion was hosted at Queer Britain last night (4 June 2024). Last year’s winner Oliver Freeston presented Mentel with the prize. 

“An idealised scene of Brighton’s infamous cruising area”

Speaking about his work, Tony explained “I work using recycled textiles and embroidery and I explore themes of queer history and identity.

Tony Mentel’s View from Dukes Mound

“This large-scale tapestry is three metres tall and illustrates an idealised scene of Brighton‘s infamous cruising area on the beach, Dukes Mound, which was destroyed by the city council during lockdown.

“I wanted to celebrate a place which brought so much joy for generations of queers, inspired by the stories I have gathered from queer elders.”

Artists Johnny Humes and Finlay McInally finished in second and third place, respectively.

Winners [L-R] Finlay McInally (3rd prize), Tony Mentel (1st prize) and Johnny Humes (2nd prize) (Image: Provided)

Queer Britain was co-founded in 2018 by Joseph Galliano-Doig MBE and former London Southbank University Chief Operating Officer Ian Mehrtens, and opened in May 2022. It has since welcomed over 75,000 visitors.

Speaking about this year’s competition, Galliano-Doig said: “Congratulations to Tony; this work was a richly deserved winner in an amazingly strong field of entries.

“It beautifully reflects shared histories and the way that queer people have found and celebrated each other through time. His work epitomises the theme of ‘Queer Creativity’.”

For more information, visit the official Queer Britain website by clicking here.