SOME of the best pieces of art from 2018 are set to go on display in Basingstoke.

The 80 finalists in the 2018 staging of The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition are going on display at the Willis Museum from Saturday.

The competition has the aim of ‘rewarding excellence and originality in contemporary watercolour painting’ and is the largest and most prestigious prize for contemporary watercolour painting in Britain.

In 2018, the competition drew a total of 1,304 submissions, which were whittled down to 80 works, all of which will be on display.

Tara McKinney, visual arts exhibitions manager for Hampshire Cultural Trust which manages the Willis Musuem, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity to see dynamic, new work by some of Britain’s leading watercolourists .

“To bring 80 paintings to Basingstoke makes this a major visiting exhibition for us. It is a remarkable showcase of how young, British artists are using traditional watercolours in a variety of ways and creative styles.

"It will also serve to inspire local artists by showing them the possibility of what water-based paints can be used for and encourage them to represent the county by entering next year’s Sunday Times Watercolour Competition.”

The display runs until March 20.

Admission is free, but donations are welcome.