Galerie Ron Mandos proudly presents Best of Graduates 2023, the sixteenth edition of the annual summer exhibition. Best of Graduates brings together the work of the most promising young artists based in the Netherlands. Curator Radek Vana, Ron Mandos, and Lars Been of the gallery visited the Dutch art academies to scout the best bachelor’s graduation projects. To celebrate these projects, we have designed a special program with festive events. The participants of Best of Graduates 2023 are:

Academie Minerva, Groningen:
Judith Knol, Timothy Lewis, Matias Salgado

AKI ArtEZ, Enschede:
Sofiia Dubyna, Sanne Hofker

Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam:
Fanja Bouts, Mellika Ghirah, Mingrui Jiang

HKU, Utrecht:
Caja Boogers, Linus van der Maas, Gijs van Poecke, Sam Werkhoven

KABK, The Hague:
Tommie Bangma, Iulia Bucureşteanu, Jemima de Jonge, Sigurður Sævar Magnúsarson, Andrei Nițu, Erika Peucelle, Angelus Schnabl, Emma Sebregts

St. Joost School of Art & Design, Breda:
Julia Leijten

Willem de Kooning Academie, Rotterdam:
Robin van Leijsen, Kaja Majoor, Mick Santman, Vincent Zanni


Best of Graduates 2023 offers a platform to recently graduated talents and introduces them to the world of galleries, collectors, and curators. The exhibition is a must-see for art lovers and professionals who would like to discover a new generation of talented artists.

Participants of Best of Graduates are eligible to win the Ron Mandos Young Blood Award, the Residency Award, the Photo Talent Award, and the Public Choice Award. Work by the winning artist of the Ron Mandos Young Blood Award will be placed in the permanent collection of Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, a dream start for a recently graduated artist.

The Residency Award gives one emerging artist the opportunity to work on a new series of works for a period of six months on the domain of BRUTUS in Rotterdam – including support and guidance from the Young Blood Foundation and BRUTUS, a partner since 2021 and known as the artist-driven playground in Rotterdam; the place where creators are given carte blanche to experiment.

Work by the winner of the Photo Talent Award will be shown in the booth of Galerie Ron Mandos at Unseen Photography Fair Amsterdam in the following year. The Public Choice Award winner will be commissioned to make the official design of The New Originals x Best of Graduates t-shirt. This year’s design was created by Bobbi Essers, our winner from last year.

Since 2021 Lakeside Collection has selected an artist from the Best of Graduates each year, as the winner of the Lakeside Collection Award to be part of an artist-in-residence program at Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen.

Ron Mandos Young Blood Foundation
Best of Graduates is made possible by the Ron Mandos Young Blood Foundation. The foundation’s mission is to offer a platform to young artists in the Netherlands. Through this platform we create an environment that cultivates and develops their talents.

Since 2008, Galerie Ron Mandos has been supporting young artistic talent by organizing the annual Best of Graduates exhibition. Here, the gallery highlights the best of each year’s graduating students and presents them to a large international public, as well as granting different kinds of prizes. In order to ensure a continuation of the tradition, and to continue offering a platform of this caliber to young, emerging artists, Ron Mandos has founded the Ron Mandos Young Blood Foundation.


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