We talk to our illustrious judges, while they are getting ready for short-listing. Today we have talked to Dr Chris Blatchley, dedicated Patron of the Arts and co-founder of the Emerging Woman Artist Award. Dr Blatchley is also Director of The Glass House Opticians, founder of Capital Aesthetics, and Medical Director of The London Migraine Clinic.
1. Why did you decide to support the Young Masters Art Prize?
I've known Cynthia Corbett since she first started as a gallerist many years ago, and indeed she ran pop-up exhibitions at my clinic in The City when we had the space. They were always interesting. I remember one piece – an installation of a naked man rowing in a boat that rocked from side to side.
2. What do you get from the experience of judging the Prize?
I think one needs to do new things that stretch ones experience. It is always fascinating to discuss art with other people. Sometimes you can hate an exhibition but when going around it with someone who loves it you can see it from a different perspective and even start to like something that you previously hadn't. I love the experience of doing something new to me and it will be an absolute pleasure to co-judge with Marine Tanguy, and learn from her expert eye too.
3. What are you most looking forward to this year?
That it should build on the success of last year's Young Masters Prize. I loved the work of the winner Azita Moradkhani and indeed bought 3 of her pieces!
4. What advice would you give to artists who have applied to this year’s Prize?
It is a hard slog being recognised as an artist and I admire the effort it requires. I wish everybody good luck. Sometimes it can be sooo difficult to decide who to give the prize to, and one wishes there were several first prizes!