On-line application process for our 139th Open Annual Exhibition is now closed!

Please sign in to your OESS account after 29th October 2019 for a list of works selected.

If you have missed the on-line entry deadline you can still download an exhibition pack and bring your work along on the hand-in days for a physical selection.

Click here to to enter

Exhibition details

Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour 139th Open Annual Exhibition

Artists working in water-based media across the UK are invited to apply to be part of the largest display of Water-based work in Scotland.

The RSW believes that painting using thin films of water based pigment is a unique skill, the mastery of which confirms the painter’s commitment to their art. For the viewer, the primacy of such skill conveys a particular richness, and for those who use the medium themselves, the art watercolour provides a direct inspiration.

To this end, in our membership, exhibitions, prize giving and all other activities we will curate to promote this singular and beautiful technique.

OESS on-line Entry deadline: 30th September – midnight.

Key Dates

This Call for Entries is for water-based works on paper. This year, because of a very tight schedule, we are only able to accommodate artists working in the U.K.

On-line entry begins mid-August 2019

Entry Deadline: 30th September 2019

Pre-selection notification: 29th October 2019. A second physical selection will take place after the hand-in dates.

Art Work Delivery: 15th & 16th December 2019

Collection of unsuccessful works: 28th December 2019, 2 – 4pm

Private View: 29th December 2019

Exhibition Opens to Public: Monday 30th December – Thursday 30th January 2019

Collection of unsold work: Saturday 1st February 10 – 4pm



Entry Pricing

Standard Prices

1 work per artist £10 submission fee (£20 hanging fee if work is selected) no larger than 48 x 48 inches.


Exhibition Entry Information

The RSW is the only Society dedicated to promoting watercolour painting in Scotland.

We pride ourselves on our distinguished history and in our forward looking approach to encouraging watercolour painting. Our annual open winter and summer exhibitions are key dates on the Scottish arts calendar bringing together leading and emerging Scottish artists.

Artist from across the UK are invited to submit water based work on paper to our 139th annual exhibition at the Royal Scottish Academy. Unfortunately, we cannot accept work submitted from outside the UK due to our exhibition schedule.

How to submit your work:

All entries submitted using the online portal must be done so by the stated deadline.

Open entrants whose work clears the online submission process will be required to deliver their work to the RSA on 15th or 16th December to a 2nd stage physical submission process.

Pre-selected works:

Works that pass the on-line pre-selection process must be delivered to the gallery on the specified dates. All work will be subject to a second physical selection process.

Work selected for the exhibition will be subject to a £20 hanging fee.

Works that are not selected for the exhibition should be uplifted from the gallery on the stated date. The society has no storage space so works not hung must be collected on this date. Any work not uplifted becomes the property of the RSW and may be disposed of or recycled.


No work will be accepted that has been exhibited at the RSA Open Exhibition, or New Contemporaries, or that has been previously exhibited in any RSW, SSA or VAS exhibition.

No reproductions, prints or copies of any kind will be accepted.

Artwork images and details:

Please ensure all artwork details are correct – titles, price, dimensions etc.

For on-line submission, Image files should be JPG or PNG. Please save your image files with your name and title of your work.

Delivery of your work:

Your work must be on paper and water based medium. It cannot be bigger than 48×48 inches. (inc frame) for the 139th exhibition all work must be framed. Metal and clip frames are not acceptable.

Once the 1st stage on-line selection process is complete artists are required to log on to the OESS system again to see if you have been successful – it is the artists responsibility to check this information. No other form of notification will be sent.

If your work is accepted through the 1st stage selection process you will then need to request an exhibition pack. This can be done in two ways: downloaded from our web-site www.rsw.org.uk **or by sending an SAE to

RSW Administrator

C/o Robb Ferguson

3rd Floor, Regent Court

70 West Regent Street


G2 2QZ

or labels can be downloaded here: open entrants entry pack


Delivery of work:

The RSA is not manned by Society Staff out with the advertised delivery times and access cannot be arranged.

There is NO CAR PARK at the Gallery. Where possible please arrive on foot or by pubic transport.

Please make sure your name and contact details are clearly printed on the back of your work.

Please remove all hanging fixtures from your work before submission.


8th Summer Exhibition, Dunoon Burgh Hall




The next RSW Open Exhibition is scheduled for December 2019

Please watch this space for further information.



138th Open Annual Exhibition at the RSA is now open!

26/11 – 13/12/18 RSA Upper Galleries, The Mound, Edinburgh.



7th Summer Annual Open Exhibition 19th May – 29th June 2018


The Meffan Museum and Art Gallery

20 W High St, Forfar DD8 1BB.

RSW 7th Open Summer Exhibition runs until 29th June 2018, admission free.



Note: A full list of events can be found on the All Events page.
  • Photo credit: Banner photo by David Wegmuller.