Wednesday 24 Sep 2014
Update – 8 October 2009: this press release has been updated to reflect a change to the programme name – now School Of Saatchi – and some developments to the format of the series.
BBC Two announces School Of Saatchi to be broadcast this autumn. This is an incredible opportunity for artists as the BBC and Charles Saatchi launch a nationwide search to discover the next generation of artistic talent.
The four-part series is part of The Modern Beauty Season, a range of programmes coming to BBC Two and BBC Four which look at the concept of beauty in modern art.
School Of Saatchi is a unique chance for artists of all kinds to showcase their talents. Artists from all disciplines including installation, painting, digital media, sculpture, printmaking, performance art and others, are encouraged to apply.
Applicants are invited to enter their work via the submissions website which launches on Monday 2 February and closes on Sunday 29 March 2009.
Following a selection process, just six people will be selected to attend an Art School established uniquely for them where they will develop their work under the tutelage of some of the most innovative names in the art world today.
It is a fantastic experience for all of them but, for one, the ultimate opportunity awaits as Saatchi has reserved a space for their work at his forthcoming exhibition at The Hermitage in St Petersburg, Russia.
Commenting on the series, Saatchi said: "I am looking forward to the prospect of finding undiscovered British talent. Anyone with a fresh creative approach should enter – because nobody knows where the next art star will emerge from."
From all the entries, a panel of respected and independent experts from the art world will shortlist the work.
This will then be further refined by a selection panel consisting of artist Tracey Emin, critic Matthew Collings, art collector Frank Cohen, Head of Art Galleries at The Barbican, Kate Bush, and Charles Saatchi himself.
From this, just six will be chosen who are felt to have the edge, raw talent and creativity to be developed and refined over three months at the specially-created Art School. .
Of Saatchi's role in the series, Jacquie Hughes, BBC Independent Commissioning Executive, says: "Charles Saatchi's involvement in this project is a great coup. His passion for contemporary art and his role as a patron for new and emerging talent is legendary.
"He plays a crucial role throughout the series by selecting the six who will attend the Art School, closely monitoring their progress, and deciding which student's work will be displayed at his exhibition."
Charles Saatchi himself will not be seen on screen, but he will be having regular meetings with the panel – who will feature through the series – and the six artists. They will relay his thoughts and feedback to viewers.
The six who make it to the Art School, over the course of filming, will be given various commissions which are designed to inspire and develop their talents.
And they will have the opportunity to meet with a number of key figures from the art world, with the aim of further exposing the talent and potential of each of the students and guiding them with their proposed projects towards the final selection.
Peter Dale, Executive Producer, comments: "The contemporary art world has famously been a controversial arena with some claiming the work is incomprehensible to the untrained eye, or created purely to shock and get headlines for the artist.
"For viewers who are passionate about this art form, School Of Saatchi offers a fascinating insight behind the scenes and into the minds that create the work, what inspires it and what it means.
"For others, it will be a journey of discovery as the series demystifies the subject and makes the art more accessible."
For the 100 shortlisted and the 50 whose work is exhibited to Saatchi, this could be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to showcase their work to such an esteemed audience.
For the six who attend the Art School, this will be a totally unique opportunity to learn from the contemporary masters. And for the one chosen by Saatchi to be given a space at his exhibition, this really is an opportunity like no other.
This is a Princess Production in association with Rare Day. It has been commissioned for BBC Two by Jacquie Hughes.
Executive Producer for Princess Productions is Henrietta Conrad. Executive Producer for Rare Day is Peter Dale and Executive Producer for the BBC is Adam Barker.
Briefly, the entry criteria for those wishing to take part are as follows. More detail will be given on the submissions website: entrants must be 18 years or over, UK residents and not currently represented by a gallery. Any medium/form of "art" can be submitted including installations, digital media, painting, sculpture, printmaking, performance art and others.
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