Swiss watchmaker and luxury icon Rolex announced 18 finalists in the fifth cycle of the famed Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. The finalists are seeking to become protégés to six renowned mentors – dancer Trisha Brown; filmmaker Zhang Yimou; author Hans Magnus Enzensberger; music producer Brian Eno; theatre director Peter Sellars; and sculptor Anish Kapoor.
Each mentor will choose one protégé to work with so there will only six of the 18 finalists will triumph. Interestingly, nine out of the 18 are from the Asia-Pacific region.
“All of the finalists are highly gifted and committed, with the potential to become major artists,” said Rebecca Irvin, director of philanthropy at Rolex. “Even though only six of them will become Protégés, we will watch all of them with great interest in the years ahead. We are confident that all will make their mark artistically.”
Rolex will announce the six protégés in June, 2010 and they will then commence their 12-month mentoring period, right up to June 2011. The brand uses anonymous panels of arts professionals to find all 120 candidates for this biennial program. Candidates do not apply directly to the program.