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Loewe launches Craft Prize

Spanish luxury brand Loewe last year launched its inaugural Craft Prize, an annual international award celebrating excellence in craftsmanship. On Tuesday the finalists were announced, 26 artists chosen from 4,000 submissions from over 75 countries.

The winner, to be announced on April 10, will receive a grant of 50,000 euros, one of the largest art stipends in the world.

The prize is the brainchild of Loewe's creative director Jonathan Anderson and backed by LVMH, Loewe's parent company.The initiative seeks to recognise uniquely talented artisans whose artistic vision and will to innovate will set a new standard for the future of craft. The incentive for the prize goes back to the roots of Loewe, a leading luxury house that started as a collective of artisans in 1846.

The finalists were selected by a panel of experts, who gathered in Madrid in late January. “The chosen work reflect their author’s total dedication: a melding of idea, skill and process, a tactile materialization of mastery and vision. The selected finalists — who range from twentysomethings to octogenarians — blur the boundary between art and craft,” a statement read.

The winning work and all shortlisted entries will feature in a traveling exhibition to be staged in venues such as the headquarters of architect’s association COAM in Madrid and the Chamber gallery in New York, as well as a third location in Tokyo.

“I don’t want to put stuff into the store that is not telling another chapter of the story. I want people to come into the store and even if you don’t buy something, you might be able to experience something,” Anderson told WWD.

The Loewe Foundation was established as a private cultural Foundation in 1988 by Enrique Loewe Lynch, a fourth-generation member of Loewe’s founding family. Today, under the direction of his daughter Sheila Loewe, the Foundation continues to promote creativity, support educational programmes and safeguard heritage in the fields of poetry, dance, design and craft, photography, and architecture.

Photo credit: Marrku Salo, source: LoeweCraftPrize.com