In Conversation

In conversation with the Judge: Dr Virginie Lerouge Knight

We talk to our illustrious judges, while they are getting ready for short-listing. Today we have talked to Dr Virginie Lerouge Knight, artist and scientist, as well as patron of the Young Masters Lerouge Knight Art Award. This award recognizes artists who explore and embrace cross-cultural awareness through their work. The criteria include artworks that explore cross-cultural themes and issues, including those relating to the artist’s own background and upbringing, as well as the artists who in their practice draw on diverse techniques and media reflecting various cultural influences.

Dr Virginie Lerouge Knight

Dr Virginie Lerouge Knight

1. Why did you decide to support the Young Masters Art Prize?

I very much support the overall theme of the Young Masters Art Prize centred on the importance of reflecting on and learning from the past, and I have admired the amazing range and quality of artworks that have been submitted previously.  Being a French artist who has been living for the last 25 years in China, I wanted to introduce a prize which specifically focuses on cross cultural appreciation, something that I believe is increasingly important in today’s social climate – and again an area in which we can learn from the past.

2. How did the idea of a Young Masters Lerouge Knight Award come to life?

Having visited the Cynthia Corbett Gallery on numerous occasions and bought artworks from a previous winner, I wanted to actively participate in the awards to help to promote emerging artists.  After discussion with Cynthia we agreed that a focus on cross-cultural awareness and appreciation was a natural area for me to support, given my interests and background.

3. If you could give your award to any artist of the past, who would that be and why?

I would have given the award not to an artist, but to a Russian patron of the Arts – Sergei Shchukin – for his visionary collection of French Modern Art at the beginning of the 20th century, when artworks by Impressionist, Post-Impressionist and Modern masters were criticised by the French art scene and snubbed by Le Louvre at that time. His personal collection of “unpopular “ works was a daring approach, based on personal taste and appreciation of cultural differences and innovative expression.

4. What are you most looking forward to this anniversary year of the Prize?

I am really looking forward to expanding my own artistic understanding through the selected artworks and meeting some of the talented prize winners in person to discuss their perspectives in more detail.

In conversation with the Judge: Frances Hedges

We talk to our illustrious judges, while they are getting ready for shortlisting. Today we are in conversation with Frances Hedges, the associate editor of Harper's Bazaar and Town and Country, overseeing all features for both magazines, with a specialism in the visual arts.

1. Why did you decide to support the Young Masters Art Prize?

The Young Masters Art Prize is a wonderful way of encouraging both emerging and established artists from around the world to look to the past in order to inform and enhance their creative approach. At Harper’s Bazaar, we believe in celebrating our long heritage (the magazine was founded in 1867) so that we can maintain our strong visual and editorial identity while continuing to innovate and evolve. That balance between respect for the past and a willingness to embrace the modern or futuristic is, I think, reflected in the ethos of the Young Masters Art Prize.

2. What do you hope to get from the experience of judging the Prize?

Judging is always a fascinating learning experience. I am looking forward to developing an even sharper eye for beauty and creativity, and to encountering an array of talented artists who may not yet be on my radar. I am also delighted to have the opportunity to judge alongside a number of other leading names from across the creative disciplines.

3. What are you most looking forward to this 10th anniversary year?

I am excited to discover how a new set of talented artists have taken inspiration from, and reinterpreted, masterpieces from a bygone era for a contemporary audience.


4. We know that Harper’s Bazaar has recently launched its own Fashion Illustration Prize. In your opinion how do prizes shape the art market and what do they give to artists?

Art prizes are a brilliant way for emerging or mid-career artists to gain a platform to showcase work that might otherwise never get the audience it deserves. At Harper’s Bazaar, we believe in celebrating the power of the imagination, and especially the shared landscape between different creative disciplines, such as art and fashion; the prizes we have either launched or support all aim to promote such positive connections.

In conversation with the Judge: Marine Tanguy

We talk to our illustrious judges, while they are getting ready for shortlisting. Today we are in conversation with Marine Tanguy, Founder of MTArt Agency, that promotes the most inspiring visual artists across the globe.

Marine Tanguy and artist Adelaide Damoah

Marine Tanguy and artist Adelaide Damoah

1. Why did you decide to support the Young Masters Art Prize?

Cynthia Corbett is a dear friend and I love supporting initiatives lead by women in our industry. The Young Masters Art Prize also aims to support artists, which is my core passion so it was an easy decision!

2. What do you get from the experience of judging the Prize?

It’s always so interesting to see how other people judge and select artists so I am looking forward to being challenged!

3. What are you most looking forward to this year?

So many things! We have recently opened a second office for our company in Paris and it is a joy to see how well Paris is doing for us. Supported by the Mayor of Paris, our artist Saype has recently covered the 14,000 square meters of the Champ de Mars in Paris with his biodegradable paint. I can’t wait!!! https://www.mtart.agency/news/beyond-walls/


4. What advice would you give to artists who have applied to this year’s prize?

I hope you've cut the fluff out and written an artistic statement that is meaningful. I wish you luck and look forward to be inspired by your works!

In conversation with the Judge: Dr Chris Blatchley

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.

Dr Chris Blatchley

Dr Chris Blatchley

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!

In conversation with the Judge: Daniella Wells

While the call for artists of the 5th edition of the Young Masters Art Prize is in full play, we want to highlight our illustrious judges. Today we have talked to Mrs Daniella Wells, Events consultant and ceramic specialist.

1. Why did you decide to support the Young Masters Art Prize?

Ceramics have been a life long love for me and I have been lucky enough that through my professional life I have seen hundreds of contemporary artists working in this field. There’s a huge interest in clay these days from 3D printing to large scale sculptures at blue chip art fairs.

The Maylis Grand Ceramics prize looks back to look forward - considering ceramic traditions and making routed in the past but by artists working today. I like that the artists we shortlist are those with a lot of detailed historical knowledge - something that I think gives a great curatorial thread.

2. What do you get from the experience of judging the Prize?

I really enjoy the conversations with other judges and gaining a deeper knowledge about works I’m less familiar with.

3. What are you most looking forward to this year?

Being introduced to new artists…

And I am really looking froward to the exhibition of the shortlisted works as well the the response to it from the audience. It’s a real pleasure to be part of an experience which brings people to really engage with contemporary work.


4. What advice would you give to artists applying to this year’s prize?

Ensure you give a concise written response to the prize brief, not just an overview of your work. It takes more preparation but worth it. Plus decent images of course and within that image selection, that's where I think you need a visual overview of your practice. Good luck!


Artists wishing to apply to the Young Masters Art Prize are encouraged to do so until 31 May 2019.

In conversation with the Judge: Stephen Feeke

While the call for artists of the 5th edition of the Young Masters Art Prize is in full play, we want to highlight our illustrious judges. Today we have talked to Mr Stephen Feeke, writer and curator.

Stephen Feeke

Stephen Feeke

1. Why did you decide to support the Young Masters Art Prize?

I have developed a particular interest in the resonances between the art of the past and the art of the present, many exhibitions I’ve curated have explored the creative possibilities of looking at history through a contemporary lens. I have also worked with many ceramicists, so I first heard about the ceramics aspect of the Young Masters initiative it brought together different aspects of my knowledge and experience in a very exciting way. Ultimately though it’s all about the art and the artists.

2. What do you get from the experience of judging the Prize?

For me, it’s all about supporting artists and opening up new opportunities for them.

3. What are you most looking forward to this year?

I am most excited about discovering work by new artists.


4. What advice would you give to artists applying to this year’s prize?

Look to the past, but don’t be slavish. Be bold, be original.


Artists wishing to apply to the Young Masters Art Prize are encouraged to do so until 31 May 2019.