New competition seeks to showcase young trans artists in Ireland

Entrants are encouraged to create a piece reflecting their own identity, sense of pride, or dreams for the future.  

Photo of painting representing art competition for trans youth
Image: TENI

Artists aged 20 and younger are invited to submit their art to an Irish nationwide competition titled “Being the Artist I Am…”, set to launch to celebrate the life of trans artist Jordan Howe. The winner’s work will be presented at the Millennium Court Arts Centre and featured in the Pride Issue of the GCN Magazine.

This competition is open only to young people who are transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming, and all entrants must live on the island of Ireland.

Artists can use their preferred style and methods, and all mediums are accepted. All participants are asked to create something that follows the competition theme of “Being the Artist I Am…”.

Everyone submitting to the competition is encouraged to create an original piece reflecting their own identity, sense of pride in self, their life journey so far, what creativity means to them, or something representing their dreams for the future.


The competition was inspired by Jordan Howe, a young trans artist from Northern Ireland whose work explored themes of identity and femininity. Her art often included pop culture references and experimental visual techniques, and her preferred styles were abstract or surreal.

Jordan worked with mixed media, but was primarily known for being a visual artist painter. She was also a music composer who was passionate about music production. She was well-known for her fabulous Lady Gaga remixes, and she also composed many original works.

An exhibition of Jordan’s work, ‘Clarity of the Stars:A Jordan Howe Retrospective’ will be held in July at the Millennium Court Arts Centre in Portadown, near Lurgan, where Jordan grew up.

To enter, simply email your submission to [email protected] with the following information: photos of the work, a short description/explanation of the work, and a short description of the artist. Any artist who wishes to have their work printed as a collaged two-page spread on the exhibition catalogue can state this in the entry form as well.

Entries will be accepted from March 31 through May 5, and all applicants must be aged 20 or younger on May 5, 2024. The winning entry will be presented in the gallery, receive a full page in the exhibition’s colour-printed catalogue and be featured in the Pride Issue of the GCN Magazine in June this year.

This trans art competition is organised by TENI and kindly supported by Millennium Court, BelongTo and GCN. Everyone who enters the competition will have a chance to be included in future events and exhibitions organised by TENI in 2024 and 2025.

© 2024 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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