Juergen Wolf and Matt Smith announced as winners of the Young Masters Art Prize and Young Masters Maylis Grand Ceramics Prize 2014
Read The Independent Article “Young Masters Art Prize 2014: Juergen Wolf and Matt Smith named winners”
German artist Juergen Wolf was named the winner of the Young Masters Art Prize 2014 at a prize giving ceremony at Sphinx Fine Art in London’s West End this evening, Wednesday 29 October. An award of £1,500 was presented to Wolf by Secretary and Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Arts, Charles Saumarez Smith.
The Young Masters Art Prize celebrates contemporary artists from all over the world who pay homage to the skill and traditions of the past, giving global recognition to artists in the early stages of their career. Wolf was selected from a shortlist of 30 international artists for his paintings that take an ironic look at icons, taboos and the menaces of the civilized world.
Judge Charles Saumarez Smith commented:
“I was very impressed by the quality of the entries to the prize as a whole, greatly enjoyed the process of selection of the winners, and found it interestingly difficult to pick the best. But, in the end, there was a unanimous decision in favour of Juergen Wolf.”
Two highly commended artists – Saskia Boelsums and Marwane Pallas – were each awarded an Artist’s Collecting Society Prize of £500 for their ability to combine skill and innovation with an awareness of art history. All three winning artists will showcase their work abroad as part of the 2015 Young Masters International Tour.
In addition to the Art Prize, the inaugural Young Masters Maylis Grand Ceramics Prize was awarded to British artist Matt Smith, who the judges deemed to show exceptional command of ceramics, alongside an awareness of the heritage of ceramic craft.
An expert panel of judges comprising Show Director of COLLECT, Daniella Wells; curator and collector, Preston Fitzgerald; and collector Maylis Grand, presented Smith with the winning prize of £1,500 during the event at Sphinx Fine Art. Two further commendations were awarded to Korean artist Jongjin Park and Israeli artist Zemer Peled.
Maylis Grand commented:
“We were looking for a young artist who successfully mixed the aesthetic and techniques of the past to re-invent a modern and vibrant work of art. Matt Smith succeeded in creating several original pieces, which fitted the brief perfectly.”
All shortlisted artists are currently exhibiting in two group exhibitions curated by young collaborative duo R/E Collective at Sphinx Fine Art and Lloyds Club, London until 31 October and 5 December 2014, respectively. Lottie Davies, winner of the Young Masters Art Prize 2012, and American artist Chris Antemann, are both exhibiting alongside the shortlist as guest artists.
Head judge of the Young Masters Art Prize, Godfrey Barker, also added:
“We believe we have the best agenda of any art prize in the world – to build 21st century originality on inspiration from the past. It brought us, as in 2012, one of the largest international entries attracted by any prize – 300 applicants from more than 20 countries. Painters led photographers and sculptors among the winners and the highly commended. In a high quality year, we predict bright futures for many who did not gain prizes.”
The Young Masters Art Prize was established by gallerist Cynthia Corbett in 2009. This year the shortlist was selected from over 300 applications, with the winner chosen by a panel of judges comprising art historian and journalist, Godfrey Barker (Head Judge); Secretary and Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Arts, Charles Saumarez Smith; Founder of Sphinx Fine Art, Roy Bolton; international collector, Werner Grub; Founder and Director of Fluff PR, Ben Austin; and Associate Director of the Young Masters Art Prize, Daisy McMullan.