The Perrier-Jouët Champagne house recently announced the launch of an Arts Salon & Prize that celebrates the ‘distinctive Art Nouveau heritage’ of the brand. Its links with Art Nouveau stem from the Anemone Belle Epoque bottle design, created by Emile Gallé in 1902.
Formed from a group of leaders in the fields of applied arts and craft, the Salon will meet twice a year to share ideas and debate developments. It will also support the selection of an annual prize winner who will receive a substantial sum towards their career development.
Salon Chair and Executive Director of the Crafts Council Rosy Greenlees explains: “The idea of a salon, whilst it has its roots in the heritage of the Paris Salon of the mid 1700s, is actually very contemporary when you consider the importance of networking within the creative industries, and it is great to have such a wide range of experts around the table. We hope to generate discussion and debate within the group and beyond, and share excitement about craft in the UK.”
The prize, which includes a £10,000 career development award and an exhibition at St Pancras Renaissance Hotel Chambers Club in June, will be awarded to a London-based artist who has been working professionally for no longer than five years. The selected artist will also receive all expenses paid trips to Design Miami in December, and to the Perrier-Jouët Maison Belle Époque, Epernay, France, which houses the largest private collection of Art Nouveau works in Europe.
“The Salon aims to recognise and award talent within contemporary craft by giving an annual prize to an emerging maker,” says Greenlees. “A significant input of funding can be extremely important in enabling a maker to acquire equipment and carry out research. My hope is that the prize extends beyond the undoubted impact on an individual and showcases the extraordinary talent that we have in this country.”
Salon member Claire Coles explains her expectations of the prize winner: “I will be looking for an artist who will really benefit from this investment in their creativity; a creative who inspires me, who is pushing boundaries in their practice, demonstrates the highest level of craftsmanship in their field and has a connection to Art Nouveau values.”
On the value of corporate sponsorship for the arts, Greenlees believes it will play an increasing role in the future. “No cultural organisation can rely solely on public funding, so there is a definite drive for private philanthropy and corporate support. The private sector and brands such as Perrier-Jouët can certainly make a significant and positive contribution to sustaining a thriving creative industries sector in the UK.”
But Salon member Claire Brewster is keen to point out the different roles public and private funding should have. “I am not sure that the public sector should be involved in projects such as this,” she says. “I prefer public funding to go to projects that have a wider benefit to the community.”
Coles adds: “It is vital to invest in creativity, but it is important that there is symbiotic relationship between the brand and artist, to ensure both benefit from the partnership.”
See www.craftscouncil.org.uk for a full list of Salon members. The prize winner will selected on 26 March at the next Salon meeting, and will be announced in late March.
More on a-n.co.uk:
Prizes and awards on Knowledge bank.
Awards on Jobs and opps.
EBacc performance measure by Rosy Greenlees.