Sky Academy Arts Scholarships 2015 Winners …
Irish visual artist Kevin Gaffney amongst five winners revealed at South Bank Sky Arts Awards
Sky Academy today announced the five artists aged 18-30 who have each been awarded a Sky Academy Arts Scholarship, including Kevin Gaffney, a 28 year old visual artist from Dublin, working in photography and film. Revealed at last night s South Bank Sky Arts Awards the five winners will each receive 30,000 / ‘ 38,000 towards the development of an artistic project and the cost of living for one year, along with mentoring from Sky and the Arts industry. The Scholarships aim to help young artists across Ireland and the UK to develop their creative practice and take their work to the next level.
This year, four scholarships were awarded in the UK and one scholarship was awarded exclusively to an Irish applicant.
Sky Academy Arts Scholarships are part of Sky Academy; a set of initiatives using the power of TV, creativity and sport to help young people unlock their potential.
Now in their fourth year, Sky Academy Arts Scholarships have supported 20 young artists across a range of creative disciplines. Applications opened last November in the categories of Visual Art, Music, Dance, Theatre, Creative Producing and Creative Writing, and closed in March 2015. Over 1,000 applications were received and assessed by industry professionals.
The 2015 judging panel was: Louise Jeffries of the Barbican, Godfrey Worsdale of BALTIC and Kris Nelson of the Tiger Dublin Fringe, as well as Sky Arts Director Phil Edgar-Jones and individuals from Sky Academy.
Kevin Gaffney is a visual artist from Dublin, working in photography and film. His work has been shown in exhibitions and film festivals internationally, including the Sapporo International Art Festival (Japan, 2014) and the Poetry Project at the Royal Hibernian Academy (Dublin, 2013). For his Sky Academy Arts Scholarship project, Kevin plans to create and exhibit a new body of work titled Tectonic Plates of Conversion exploring areas of forgotten industries which remain as spectres on the Irish landscape.
The other Sky Academy Arts Scholars 2015 are Sarah Maple, Adebayo Fakos, Jonnie Bayfield and Anisa Haghdadi*.
Kris Nelson, Director of the Tiger Dublin Fringe and ambassador for the Irish scholarship, said I m delighted for Irish winner Kevin Gaffney and all the nominees.
Kevin s work is bold, brave and unusual he is an artist working with tremendous insight, powerful images and personal context to create stunning video and art works in Ireland and abroad. I m sure that the Sky Academy Arts Scholarship will help him take his projects to the next level, fostering new collaborations and higher profile for his work. Overall, the panel was thrilled with the quality of Irish artists in this round; their projects were ambitious and inspiring and their pitches were eloquent and urgent it made our decision very difficult.
Irish emerging artists continue to astonish and I encourage each of the nominees to continue to be so fearless in the pursuit of their projects.
Mark Deering, Director of Corporate Affairs, Sky Ireland said Sky Academy is all about helping young people fulfil their potential and so we are thrilled to continue our support of emerging artistic talent with this Arts Scholarship. The standard of entries and the calibre of finalists was extremely high and I d like to congratulate Kevin on winning. He joins our existing TV Scholar, Carly Matthews-Lynch who is studying at the National Film School at IADT, and our Sports Scholar, 800m athlete Mark English, both of whom are benefitting from the support of Sky Academy to enable them to reach their potential in their chosen fields.
Alongside the five winners, 7 UK artists and 5 Irish artists were named as Finalists, and a further 25 applicants across the UK and Ireland were Highly Commended.
About Sky Academy
Sky Academy Arts Scholarships is part of Sky Academy, a set of initiatives that use the power of TV, creativity and sport to help young people build practical skills and experience to unlock their potential. The initiatives cover all ages, from primary school right through to those starting their careers.
Sky has chosen to focus on supporting young people as we believe we can make a real difference by making the most of our strengths in media and technology. Sky Academy aims to reach one million young people across the UK and Ireland by 2020.
There are a number of other free Sky Academy initiatives schools and young people can take part in.
About Sky and Sky Ireland
Sky is Europe s leading entertainment company. The group serves 21 million customers across five countries: Italy, Germany, Austria, the UK and Ireland. We offer the best and broadest range of content, deliver market-leading customer service and use innovative new technology to give customers a better TV experience, whenever and wherever they choose.
In the UK and Ireland, Sky is the biggest investor in television content, investing more than ‘ 2.75 billion a year in channels such as Sky 1, Sky Atlantic, Sky Living, Sky Arts, Sky Sports, Sky Movies and Sky News.
Around two-thirds of Sky s content spend is home-grown and Sky is the fastest-growing source of investment in original home-grown programmes such as Moone Boy, Fortitude and Penny Dreadful. More than 2 million people tune into Sky channels each week in Ireland.
Alongside its commitment to offering customers a greater choice of high-quality content, Sky is a leading innovator. Customers enjoy total control and flexibility over their favourite TV through Sky+, watch TV on the move through Sky Go, and enjoy the best quality TV experience at home through High Definition.
And with Sky On Demand, customers can access thousands of hours of programming when, where and how they want including thousands of Sky Movies on Demand and the latest blockbusters to buy or rent with Sky Store.
Sky Ireland is located in offices at Burlington Road, Dublin, employing more than 850 people and has 36 Sky retail stores across the country.
Sky believes in making a positive impact on the communities in which it operates and building a better business for the long term. We do this through Sky Academy, a set of initiatives using the power of TV, creativity and sport to help young people unlock their potential. For example, in Ireland, over 200 secondary schools have participated in the Sky Sports Living for Sport programme which offers multi-week and one-day sports projects to inspire young people and help build confidence and practical skills.
In addition, through Sky Academy Scholarships, Sky provides mentoring and financial assistance to up and coming talent in sports, TV and the arts in Ireland including a Masters programme in Broadcast Production at the IADT as well as providing important support to the Sky Academy Sports scholar Mark English in his quest to achieve Olympic glory in Rio next year.
* Sky Academy Arts Scholars in addition to Kevin Gaffney are:
Sarah Maple (age 30, UK)
Sarah is a visual artist from Crawley. In 2007 Sarah won the 4 New Sensations competition for emerging artists, run by Charles Saatchi, and since then has exhibited artwork, films and performances internationally. Sarah s work is a form of activism, using wit and humour to engage audiences with issues of gender, religion and politics.
Her Sky Academy arts Scholarship project, working titled I Disagree With What You Say aims to create an exhibition of new paintings, photography and performances based on the concept of freedom of speech.
Adebayo Fakos (age 29, UK)
Adebayo is a music producer based in London. Having begun his career in the UK underground scene, Adebayo has produced music for signed and unsigned artists including Giggs, Wretch 32 and JME. Adebayo s Sky Academy Arts Scholarship project will focus on creating an EP comprised mostly of house music, followed by a live performance with collaborating artists.
Jonnie Bayfield (age 22, UK)
Jonnie is a writer and performer from Great Yarmouth, currently living in London.
His previous projects have included a variety of comedy, new writing and devised work with his theatre company Caligula s Alibi. Jonnie s Sky Academy Arts Scholarship project is to write an original novel with the working title Coaster and develop an accompanying performance piece based around growing up in the extremities of rural England. It follows Oscar Lime, a rudderless young man, as he attempts to come to terms with adulthood by stealing money from an elderly lady with dementia.
Anisa Haghdadi (age 25, UK)
Anisa is a creative producer living and working in Birmingham.
She set up her first social enterprise aged 15 and in 2012 was awarded the British Empire Medal in the Queen s Birthday Honours list for services to education and young people through the work of her most recent social enterprise, Beatfreeks.
Anisa s Sky Academy Arts Scholarship project, Learn and Build (LAB) will provide space, both physical and mental, for an eco-system of young creative innovators including social entrepreneurs, activists and artists to sprint work in an agile environment, culminating in a multi-disciplinary Festival of Audacity .
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