Gateway to British Art Prize 2023

December 18, 2023

The Yale Center for British Art (YCBA) has awarded the 2023 Gateway to British Art Prize to Kaylee Latta, Aryana Jones-Davis, Camila Caffarena, and Wing Ching Ivy Lo.

The annual writing competition was launched in partnership with CT State Community College Gateway (formerly Gateway Community College) in 2020. The program encourages local students to develop an interest in looking at and writing about art by inviting them to explore, engage with, and respond to the museum’s collection. Gateway students across academic disciplines choose one object to write about in a thoughtful, persuasive way. 

This year, the students selected works from the exhibition In a New Light: Paintings from the Yale Center for British Art, which was on view at the Yale University Art Gallery through December 3. James Vanderberg, Educator, High School, College, University, and Community Engagement, YCBA, worked closely with teachers Lauren E. O’Leary and Peter Bonadies to introduce their classes to the exhibition through specialized tours. O’Leary is a professor of English and academic coordinator at Gateway and Bonadies is an instructor of studio art.

Kaylee Latta won first place for her deeply personal interpretation of George Romney’s painting Anne Wilson and Her Daughter, Sybill. Aryana Jones-Davis won second place for her reflection on the aesthetic beauty of Frederick Leighton’s portrait of Ellinor Guthrie (née Stirling). The two runners-up both wrote about works by Joseph Mallord William Turner: Camila Caffarena imagined herself within Harlech Castle, from Tygwyn Ferry, Summer’s Evening Twilight, and Wing Ching Ivy Lo described how Dort or Dordrecht: The Dort Packet-Boat from Rotterdam Becalmed conveyed hope. The winning essays are published on the YCBA website.

The four award recipients were selected by a jury of local art professionals that included art critic Judy Birke; artist and recent NXTHVN studio fellow John Guzman; and Tina Menchetti, the art program director at Chapel Haven Schleifer Center. The awardees received cash prizes.

The YCBA hosted a celebration for the participants at the Yale University Art Gallery in November. The event was an opportunity for the awardees to present their work to faculty, family, friends, and museum staff. 

About CT State Community College Gateway

Connecticut State Community College, also known as CT State, was launched on July 1, 2023, as the result of a consolidation of the state’s twelve community colleges. CT State has twelve campuses along with satellite locations in every corner of Connecticut, serving the residents of 169 towns, as well as neighbors from Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island.

Located in the heart of downtown New Haven, Gateway is CT State’s flagship urban campus. Gateway offers more than 90 accredited degree and certificate programs, serving more than 14,000 students who take classes for college credit, professional development, and personal enrichment. The college awards associate degrees and certificates in academic programs that transfer to four-year universities, along with career-track programs in engineering and automotive technologies, technical studies, health care, and business. For more information, visit

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Participants in the Gateway to British Art prize, Yale University Art Gallery, photo by Michael Ipsen