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The craft&design Selected Awards 2013 - Specialist Judges

craft&design Selected Awards

Medeia Cohan-Petrolino
Medeia Cohan-Petrolino
Specialist Media Category

Medeia Cohan-Petrolino

“I’m the Creative Director of School for Creative Startups, a self proclaimed ‘doer’ and born networker. Over the years, I’ve carved out a versatile career path for myself working across professional sports, entertainment and fine art sectors. I’m a skilled creative programme developer with a broad understanding of everything from concept and strategy to implementation and communication.

My philosophy is to enjoy what I do and to support those I believe in. Throughout my many roles over the last decade, I’ve dedicated my time to being a champion of professional development for creatives - something I believe there simply isn’t enough of. My versatile background in emerging fine art, public relations, event management and programme design have allowed me to advise and support emerging startups on a wide array of subjects, which I absolutely relish.

Previous to joining School for Creative Startups I had another incredible job as Head Curator at University of the Arts London, Europe’s largest Higher Education arts institution. While in that post I designed and ran the unique Emerging Artist Programme and the University’s Alumni Programme, both of which support creatives throughout their professional journey. My experience leading on events and programmes such as UAL’s annual Future Map exhibition, Artsmart, The Artist and Collectors Exchange, The Arts Gallery and the University of the Arts London Art Collection has allowed me to develop a varied arsenal of skills and a lot of great contacts.

Nowadays I often lecture on career development for the creative industries. I’m also the Chair of the London Creative Enterprise Collective and a member of the Courvoisier Future 500 network.

In all honesty, I’m a tough judge as I see a lot of wonderful creative work on a daily basis in my role. I try to step out of my own tastes and consider the bigger appeal of something. As a judge for 2013 craft&design Selected Awards, I’ll be using a similar set of criteria that I use when selecting students for entrance to School for Creative Startups. I always look for a high level of originality and innovation. Nothing stops me in my tracks like something I’ve never seen before or a work that causes the hairs on the back of my neck to stand up. It’s a noisy world and it’s hard to stand out, those who can achieve that kind of reaction deserve recognition. I also look for an excellent quality and delivery of the work. Nothing is worse than a great idea and a poor execution. You should be proud of everything you put out into the public arena as you are always being judged. Don’t let it down at the last hurdle.”

Judge’s Statement

Gold Award - Wayne Hart
Wayne Hart's work offers a unique juxtaposition - upholding traditional letter-carving methods while simultaneously being contemporary and innovative. His passion for his craft and meticulous manner come across in every aspect of the work that he produces. Wayne's craftsmanship and creativity are already at an impressive stage and his plans to continue pushing forward with his practice and technical development will surely make him one to watch.

Silver Award - Phiona Richards
Phiona Richards transforms unloved literature into delicate, complicated pieces of art. The devil is truly in the detail with these feminine craft pieces, which combine semi-precious stones and fine lace with well positioned phrases and organic or modular forms. The finished pieces are unique, aesthetically stunning and rich with narrative and personality.

Silver Award - Katcha Bilek
Katcha Bilek's work explores traditional methods with modern implementation and humour. Her interest in creatively repurposing vegan materials, long term sustainability and future plans for realising a social enterprise are to be celebrated and replicated, as an example of creativity with social purpose, capturing the idea of doing good, while doing well.

In many ways this category posed some real challenges from a judging perspective as it is very hard to compare totally different mediums. There was something about each shortlisted candidate that made them interesting. There is no question about Nathalie Vin's eye for detail and meticulous mosaic practice, or the fluidity and craftsmanship of Mary Crabb's basketmaking, nor the clever material use and creativity of Val Hunt's sculpture. Each submission had an undeniable and unique appeal, but in the end it came down to consistent craftsmanship and quality as well as future plans for development.

2013 Judges »
Crafts at Blackthorpe Barn

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