British architect joins Rolex mentoring scheme

Sir David Chipperfield CBE, part of the 2016 Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative.

Rolex has added an award-winning British architect to its panel of acclaimed artists who will mentor rising young talent for a year.

Sir David Chipperfield CBE will join writer Mia Couto, director Alfonso Cuarón, composer Philip Glass, visual artist Joan Jonas, dramatist Robert Lepage and dancer and choreographer Ohad Naharin on the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. The artists were announced at a ceremony in Mexico yesterday.

Chipperfield is responsible for many grand projects around the world, including the Turner Contemporary in Margate and Café Royal on Regent Street in the UK.


Panels of artists and art world professionals are currently meeting to draw up a shortlist of young artists for the project. The mentors will then select their protégé with the 12-month mentoring period beginning in mid-2016.

Rebecca Irvin, head of philanthropy at Rolex, said: “These seven artists have had a profound influence on their disciplines for decades and are held in high esteem by the public and their peers. We acknowledge their generosity in serving as mentors in the Rolex Arts Initiative. They will join the family of internationally acclaimed artists who have committed to passing on their passion and expertise to a younger generation and to be reinvigorated in their own art in return.”

Each protégé receives 25,000 Swiss francs to support his or her participation in the programme, with a further 25,000 Swiss francs available for the creation of a new work at the conclusion of the mentoring year. Mentors are asked to spend up to six weeks with their protégés, but the pairs have complete freedom to interact in the way that suits them best.

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