The Dewar Arts Awards were set up by the then Scottish Executive in 2002 as a fitting memorial to Scotland’s first First Minister, Donald Dewar.

We disburse the income from a trust fund to support talented young artists in Scotland, who do not have the financial means to pursue their ambitions.

We accept nominations for the awards all year round, in recognition of the fact that opportunities do not always fall neatly into the financial calendar,

The nominations are assessed by a board of Trustees, comprising some of the most respected names in the arts. Chaired by journalist and broadcaster Ruth Wishart, our Trustees are Sir Brian McMaster, Lesley ThomsonNicola CatterallJill MillerPolly RewtRoberta DoyleAndy Arnold, Roy McEwan-Brown and Jean Sangster. Find out more about each of them here.

Patrons of the awards include Sir Cameron MackintoshGiles HavergalTommy SmithCatherine Lockerbie and Callum Innes. And they have recruited a host of top-flight talent spotters across all the art forms.

So far the Trust has provided over £3.5 million of funding to support more than 400 talented young Scottish artists in achieving their ambitions.

The Dewar Arts Awards has received additional funding for the next three years from the William Grant Foundation. These funds will be used to further our work to support exceptionally talented young people who lack the financial means to achieve their full potential. The Dewar Arts Awards would like to thank the Foundation for its generous support. The new funds will be administered in the same way as our existing funds – the application process therefore remains unchanged.

For further information on the awards please email admin@dewarawards.org.

Emily Hoile - Harp (Awardee 2010)

Emily Hoile – Harp (Awardee 2010)


Nominations are assessed by some of the most respected names in the arts.


We have supported more than 300 talented young artists. Find out more about them here.