dot-art Schools Exhibition
dot-art Schools Exhibition
dot-art Schools Exhibition

Sign Up

Download the 2017-18 Entry Form.

Download the Teachers Information Leaflet

The Programme

dot-art Schools Cheshire is an interactive, online, inter-school, art competition, taking part on an annual basis and culminating in an exhibition in a central location. Open to primary (year 5) and secondary (year 9) schools in Cheshire West & Chester, Cheshire East and Warrington, it is designed to nurture talent, raise ambition, and take art out of the classroom and into the real world. With the current threats to creative subjects on the national curriculum, dot-art Schools offers a way of keeping young people engaged with the arts, allows them to see a creative career path, and encourages them to attend exhibitions and engage with culture, outside of school.

dot-art Schools was orginally launched in the Liverpool City Region in 2012, where is continues to operate on an annual basis. In September 2016, thanks to a new partnership with Liverpool John Moores University, a parallel second programme was launched for the Cheshire region which we hope will be as successful as the first!

How It Works

During the Autumn and Spring terms, each school creates and selects 25 pieces of student work which they feel best represent the talents of their students. These art works are submitted to their dot-art Schools page by February Half Term, then put on display to the world via the dot-art Schools website (schools.dot-art.com).

A panel of art experts will select the top 3 artworks from each school. Students from all the schools in the programme, as well as the general public, will then be able to vote for their favourite piece of art from the judge's shortlist. During the Summer term, an exhibition will be held at a gallery showcasing the artwork with the most votes from each participating school. The overall winner and two runners up in both age categories are chosen and announced at the prize giving ceremony.



Overall winner

  • Scholarship to dot-art, giving them a year's membership to dot-art's network, allowing them to showcase and sell their work alongside professional artists. (See: dot-art.co.uk/artist/)
  • Tickets to see the latest exhibition at Tate Liverpool.
  • Art Materials.

Runners Up x 2

  • Tickets to see the latest exhibtion at Tate Liverpool
  • Art Materials.


Overall winner

  • Tickets to see the latest exhibition at Tate Liverpool
  • Art Materials.

Runners Up x 2

  • Tickets to see the latest exhibtion at Tate Liverpool
  • Art Materials.

All shortlisted artists (3 from each partipating school) will be awarded certificates.


This annual programme will encourage healthy competition between students and schools, as well as driving traffic to the site and therefore increasing the audience for the students' work and the profile of the school. The final exhibition will provide a wonderful opportunity for the successful students to show their work in a public setting and a fantastic way of celebrating the art work created and the school's commitment to arts education, demonstrating the quality of art produced to parents, families, local authorities and the wider community. Finally the programme can help participating schools meet many of the KS2 and 3 National Curriculum requirements for Art and Design, the criteria outlined in the OFSTED evaluation framework, as well as providing a valuable tool for schools working towards Artsmark status.


Pupils benefited greatly from the feedback received when their work was shared locally or more widely...

Schools should... build sustained partnerships with art galleries and creative practitioners.

Pupils who met with inspectors reported consistently the motivational impact of seeing their own work displayed professionally and publicly...

The public exhibition of students' work was highly effective in strengthening links between schools and the local community, including diverse community groups, different generations and those living in contrasting socio-economic circumstances.

Extracts from: Ofsted Report - Making a mark: art, craft and design education, 2008/11

Information for Teachers

Download the 2017-18 Entry Form.

Download the Teachers Information Leaflet

dot-art Schools was first launched in the Liverpool City Region in 2012 and since then over 3000 children have taken part from almost 170 schools. We have held exhibitions at the Domino Gallery, the Walker Art Gallery and St George Hall and each year, three children from each participating school have been presented with a certificate by the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, as well as a range of prizes awarded. In response to feedback from schools, in September 2016 we changed the primary age group from Year 6 to Year 5.

In September 2016, thanks to our new partnership with LJMU, dot-art Schools also launched in Cheshire. Primary and secondary schools in Cheshire West & Chester, Cheshire East and Warrington are currently taking part in the pilot year of our second region and we will be inviting all schools in the region to take part in the 2017-18 programme; registration will open in July 2017.

Please download the document below for more details about how the programme works and the benefits it can bring:

Feedback from Liverpool schools:

  • “We have just looked at the art work on the website, the work looks amazing. We are so happy with the quality of all of the schools submissions. You have done a great job!”
  • “I have just looked at our page and I am very impressed with the whole project”
  • “What a fantastic event!”
  • “It has been a long time since we have had something of this calibre in the city to promote and celebrate the work of our young artists”

Feedback from Liverpool exhibition visitors:

  • “What a fantastic level of skill from such talented young people"
  • "What talented youth we have in Liverpool, so impressed with all the artwork presented"
  • "A lovely exhibition with some excellent work on display, hope it encourages many of the exhibitors to become artists of the future"
  • "I didn't realise the work was all by people under 15! Rather inspiring"

Key Dates 2016-17:

  • 1st September 2016 – School recruitment for 2015-16 programme begins.
  • 16th December 2016 – Deadline for schools to sign up.
  • February 2017 – Deadline for schools to submit work for competition.
  • 3rd April - 5th May 2017 – Online voting period.
  • 7th June 2017 – Prize Giving Ceremony.
  • 8th -17th June – Exhibition of winning works.


The dot-art Schools programme has been developed by dot-art, a Liverpool based arts organisation which has been supporting artists and developing innovative and creative visual arts projects and initiatives since 2005.

We are now using our skills, experience and expertise to give the young people of the region access to an exciting new public platform for their creative output, and a taste of the way the art world works.

dot-art is made up of two arms:

dot-art Ltd was founded in Liverpool in 2005 and specialises in affordable, high quality, locally sourced art. We work with over 100 artists to provide an unrivalled choice of original art and limited edition prints for home or business, as well as offering a range of complementary services including; commissions, art rental, art consultancy, exhibition planning and implementation, bespoke framing, art valuation and restoration and artist sourcing. See: dot-art.com

All our work supports our not-for profit arm dot-art Services CIC, which exists to support North-West based visual artists, both emerging and established, through a range of services and opportunities designed to help them develop their careers and gain exposure and promotion for their work, as well as delivering a programme of adult art classes at a range of venues across Liverpool (see: dot-art.co.uk/art-classes); and dot-art Schools, our innovative inter school art competition, launched in 2012. See: services.dot-art.com.