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This Is Art!

  • Arts Project
  • Exhibition

The 2023 This Is Art! competition, from RTÉ and The Creative Ireland Programme, received over 3,000 entries. The theme in 2023 was ‘This Is Inspiration’, and young artists of all abilities, aged 18 and under proved to be inspirational.

Meet the 2023 winners across the five categories in the cool video compilation above and scroll down to find out more about their work, as well as why the judges felt it stood out.

They shared prizes from a fund of €10,000 as well as the This Is Art! Grand Prix Award – a specially commissioned one-of-a-kind glass trophy handmade by renowned glass artist, Róisín de Buitléar.

The 2023 This is Art! winners were:

  • Age 7 and under: Maimoonah (6) from Dublin created ‘Punk The Skunk’
  • Age 8-11: Tadhg (11) from Dublin created ‘A Day in Lesvos’
  • Age 12-15: Zihan (14) from Dublin created ‘Journey of Tranquility’
  • Age 16-18: Georgia (16) from Dublin created ‘The Stratford Fox’
  • Group category: An Chéad Bhliain, Coláiste Ailigh, Letterkenny created ‘Mess Monsters’

Go to for the full gallery and much more!

Winner: Age 7 and under: Maimoonah (6) from Dublin created ‘Punk The Skunk’

Maimoonah says: “When I make art, I feel like I’m imagining myself in everything I love. I’m really glad that the judges liked my art.

Tadhg Crowley, The Glucksman Museum, University College Cork says: “What a wonderfully expressive and joyful artwork! It is rare that an artwork will capture the attention of all the judges the way that Punk the Skunk did. A beautiful use of materials, Maimoonah has demonstrated extraordinary skill. Wholehearted congratulations Maimoonah, keep being creative!”

Winner: Age 8-11: Tadhg (11) from Dublin created ‘A Day in Lesvos’

Tadhg says: “Accepting this award was really really exciting for me. I’m so grateful to have won. I wish everybody could win! I love art and I spend a lot of time drawing. I have a big binder filled with all my drawings. I find inspiration all around me. The world inspires me. There are billions and trillions of things around you that you can draw. Creating this art was really fun to do.”

Judge Colin Martin RHA, RHA School & NCAD says: “This was a compelling winner in this category and shows how art can tell stories on many levels. There is a lovely freedom to how Tadhg draws the courthouse, and you can feel the light and heat from the way he describes the building with fluency and accuracy. It also tells a personal powerful story of what is happening in the courthouse from his perspective. Congratulations!”

Winner: Age 12-15: Zihan (14) from Dublin created ‘Journey of Tranquility’

Zihan says: “I began creating art when I was six or seven. Art offers a relaxing moment, I get to get away from the stress of school. My piece mainly focuses on the power of music and how it transports us to a more tranquil state amongst the chaos of everyday life. It feels really amazing to win and I love the trophy!”

Judge Amanda Coogan, Visual Artist says: “Zihan, this is an exceptional piece of art, huge congratulations. You are such an accomplished artist. I particularly love the composition. The double reflection in the window is wonderful, it allows me three perspectives on your beautiful journey of tranquility. Super congratulations and I look forward to seeing more of your work.”

Winner: Age 16-18: Georgia (16) from Dublin created ‘The Stratford Fox’

Georgia says: “I’m definitely still in shock that I have won first place in this category in This is Art! 2023. For any young artists, my advice would be to practice every day, just draw and paint even if you think it’s going to be bad. Just keep drawing and keep practicing. If you have what you think is a good idea, you should go for it, just take leaps and go for it. You’re going to be a better artist if you keep practicing.

Judge Ruth Medjber, Photographer says: “Street Art is not easy, but this young artist has totally aced it. She has placed a really special piece in the perfect location, taking into consideration what others might want to see. Her technical knowledge is also far beyond her years.”

Winners: Group category: An Chéad Bhliain, Coláiste Ailigh, Letterkenny created ‘Mess Monsters’

They said: “We are so happy to discover that we are the Grand Prix winners in the group category. We worked so hard for weeks on this project and we’re so happy that the judges loved it too. When working with others, there are different ideas and thoughts and it’s great to see how all the different ideas come together to create amazing art. We had great fun making these monsters and as a class we are so proud.”

Judge Aoife Dooley, Illustrator & Author says: “I love how each student who took part, took a piece of the story that meant something to them personally and expressed this through art! The piece looks amazing and I love how they used different mediums throughout.”

Massive thanks to all the young people who sent in their amazing art. You can see all the winning entries and the runners-up on the offical site –

And thanks to our expert judges:

  • Colin Martin RHA, RHA School & NCAD
  • Tadhg Crowley – Senior Curator, The Glucksman Museum, University College Cork
  • Amanda Coogan – Visual Artist
  • Aoife Dooley, Illustrator & Author
  • Ruth Medjber, Photographer

Suzanne Kelly, Head of Children’s and Young People’s content RTÉ said: “RTÉ is so thrilled to be part of such a positive and inspiring initiative. Once again, the level of creativity from 3,000 young artists of all ages and all abilities all over the country has been so impressive. Our invitation for This Is Art! was to get involved, get imagining and get creative and the results have been truly mind-blowing! Well done to all the winners and to everyone who entered. Your work and your contribution to this year’s competition is truly inspiring.”

Tania Banotti, Director, The Creative Ireland Programme, says: “On behalf of the Creative Ireland Programme I want to congratulate the winners of This is Art! 2023 on their exceptional work. Creative Ireland is delighted to support any opportunity for young people to be creative in whatever form that takes and this year we were thrilled to see the broad range of styles and techniques employed by everyone who entered This is Art. Like the judges we were genuinely impressed with the breadth of imagination and skills employed by all of our young artists. We would also like to thank our This is Art partners who have delivered this wonderful creative programme.”

This is Art 2024 – The theme for Creative Ireland and RTÉ’s wonderful art competition for young people will be announced on the day of Cruinniú na Óg and the competition will be open from September for entries.

Click here to find out more!

Click here to see this years entries!



15 Jun 2024


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