THE winners of a prestigious North East contemporary art competition which attracted applications from across the country were revealed.

London based artists, Shaun Doyle and Mally Mallinson have been awarded this year’s County Durham Community Foundation’s Dover Prize, a two year bursary that supports the art and creative industries.

The visionary pair have won a bursary of £10,000, a fund that will be used to create an exhibition of works to be premiered in Darlington in 2018.

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Mr Doyle and Mr Mallinson, were selected from more than 70 applicants from across the UK, beating semi-finalists Yvette Hawkins from Newcastle and Mel Brimfield from London.

The County Durham Community Foundation hopes the competition will raise the profile of the arts and creative practice in Darlington.

Stephen Wiper, Creative Darlington manager said: “The Dover Prize is a significant opportunity for artists to undertake research and develop new work, which will be seen for the first time in Darlington.

“It drew many applications and it’s wonderful to see great talent from across the UK exploring opportunities here.

“The winning artists have opportunities to share their ideas with people in Darlington and it will be interesting to see what they create and share in the borough.”

The winners first met at Wimbledon School of Art in 1989 and have already begun to make their mark in the art world.

The pair’s visual creations have been exhibited across the UK and Europe, featuring at well-known institutions such as the Whitechapel Gallery, Tate Britain, Galerie Nostheide-Eycke in Dusseldorf, Germany and Venlo Stadhuis in the Netherlands.

Mr Mallinson is also known for co-directing an artist run project in London that went on to become MOT International, a commercial space that represented two Turner Prize winners.

Barbara Gubbins, of County Durham Community Foundation said: “We are delighted that the relaunch has attracted so many submissions from a wide variety of artists working in different art forms. The panel were unanimous in their choice, despite stiff competition from the two runners up.”

The winners were unveiled at Darlington’s Crown Street Art Gallery yesterday.