Wednesday 27 May 2015

Interviews with the finalists in the Catlin Art Prize 2015 at Londonewcastle Project Space

Catlin Art Prize 2015
Londonewcastle Project Space
8-30 May 2015

Each year, curator, publisher and art dealer Justin Hammond scours the country looking for the most promising graduate art talent. He attends degree shows, speaks to course tutors, collectors, curators and artists, and compiles a list of 40 graduates, whom he deems worthwhile watching. The Catlin Guide, launched each year at the London Art Fair, presents these 40 artists with an image of their work and a short Q&A interview about their future projects and aspirations. From this long-list, Hammond then selects eight artists to be in the Catlin Art Prize exhibition, held in May at the Londonewcastle Project Space in Shoreditch. He looks for talent and promise, of course, but also for artists whom he thinks will work well together and produce a cohesive and coherent group show. This year, the eight finalists’ work draws on themes of urban renewal and gentrification, power struggles, and a more surprising common undercurrent: Nazism.

The eight artists to look out for this year are: Jon Baker (Chelsea College of Arts), Felicity Hammond (Royal College of Art), Oliver Hickmet (City & Guilds of London Art School), Nicholas William Johnson (Royal College of Art), Paul Schneider (Royal Academy of Arts), Lexi Strauss (Royal College of Art), Dominic Watson (The Glasgow School of Art) and Zhu Tian (Royal College of Art). With the winner of the £5000 prize – selected by a jury, this year comprising Aaron Cezar, founding Director of Delfina Foundation; Charlotte Schepke, founder of London art space Large Glass and previously director of the Frith Street Gallery; and  George Vasey, independent writer and curator of the  Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art – having been announced on 13 May as Zhu Tian and the Visitor Vote (£2000) going to Paul Schneider, Studio International went to take a look at the exhibition and to speak to the artists taking part.[1]

[1] Unfortunately Oliver Hickmet could not be present.

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