George Condo Short Story Competition

“The Psychoanalytic Puppeteer Losing His Mind” by George Condo

There is no shortage of advice for writers about how to generate new ideas. This advice can range from reading other writers to taking long baths, listening to music or reading the morning pages. One of the most useful ones, in my experience, is art and photography – either visiting a gallery or actually going out with a camera or sketchbook and creating your own art. Visual stimulation is a great way to get your imagination going. As regular readers would know, we frequently provide Photo Inspirations to inspire you.

Now the Hayward Gallery is also providing inspiration for writers. To coincide with Mental States, an exhibition by George Condo being held at Gallery, organisers are inviting the public to write 300-word short stories inspired by Condo’s portraits. The submissions will be judged by both George Condo and Hayward Gallery Director Ralph Rugoff, with the best stories being published on the Hayward Gallery blog. The overall winner will also receive limited edition George Condo playing cards, a signed catalogue and other prizes.

Spanning three decades of Condo’s work, this exhibition looks like a great way to inspire yourself. Mental States runs until January 8th. The competition closes on December 18th, so there is plenty of time to stroll around the exhibit, notebook in hand.

For more information on the competition see the Hayward Gallery’s Facebook page.

Update: The winner is Clare Hill with her story On The Edge.

Alex writes short stories and occasionally things a little bit longer. He has had fiction published in places like Wilderness House LIterary Review, Metazen and Spectre Magazine and has a story in the National Flash Fiction Day anthology Jawbreakers. He is currently working on a collection of stories, a novella and his blog at

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