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Travers Smith announces winners of its 2018 CSR Art Programme


Travers Smith LLP is delighted to announce the winners of its 2017/18 CSR Art Programme featuring artwork by students from the University of Westminster and Royal College of Art (RCA), the world's most influential postgraduate art and design school.

After much debate and careful consideration of the 30 shortlisted artworks, the panel of judges, including Natalia Grabowska (Assistant Curator, The Serpentine Galleries), Gillian Wolfe CBE (Arts Education and Heritage Consultant), and artist Alex Calinescu, selected two winners, one from the University of Westminster and one from the RCA.

Gökhan Tanrıöver, a graduate from The University of Westminster, received a prize for his artwork Confessionals – a series of modern, personal and striking black and white photographs. RCA postgraduate Carol Wilhide-Justin was awarded a prize for her luminous series of Japanese woodcuts No More, Meanwhile, and Not Yet. Both artists received a £2,000 cash prize.

Devinya Thomas and Jessica Rimondi, both from the University of Westminster, and Otto Ford and Vanessa da Silva from the RCA were also highly commended by the judges for their artworks.

An additional prize of £2,000, which was decided by a popular vote open to everyone who works at Travers Smith, was awarded to Nemo Nonnenmacher from the RCA for his artwork Hand I/II and Hand II/II.

Travers Smith’s innovative and market leading CSR Art Programme has been going from strength to strength since its launch in 2015. The Programme not only includes showcasing and facilitating the sales of art students’ work and awarding cash prizes, but also offers a cutting edge programme of workshops on professional development, business skills and pro bono legal advice.

To complement its established partnerships with the University of Westminster and RCA, the firm has developed a new relationship with The Serpentine Galleries, one of the most successful and influential galleries in Europe. Through its links with The Serpentine Galleries, the firm offers participating artists valuable insights into exhibition planning and development, as well as opportunities to meet curators and established artists. This exciting new addition to its programme of professional development opportunities underlines the firm's commitment to supporting student artists in their transition towards professional practice.

Travers Smith CSR Partner Donald Lowe said: "Many congratulations to the winners of the 2018 Travers Smith CSR Art Programme. We are delighted to have been able to support such a talented cohort of students from the University of Westminster and Royal College of Art. We have been very impressed by the commitment of the young artists and truly inspired by their beautiful and compelling artworks.

The Art Programme is at the heart of our Corporate Social Responsibility work and underlines our CSR commitment from the moment someone steps into our offices."

University of Westminster winner Gökhan Tanrıöver said: "It has been a privilege to take part in this year's CSR Art Programme at Travers Smith. I was very pleased to have my work chosen and for it to be displayed at a firm which places a great emphasis on diversity and inclusion".

RCA winner, Carol Wilhide-Justin said:  "When I was contacted by Travers Smith a year ago at my MA graduation show at the RCA I didn’t quite appreciate what being selected by them would mean. It has been so much more than an exhibition of work (for a year in their offices) and the opportunity to sell.

It has also been a great opportunity to meet members of the Travers Smith team, artists from Westminster and to catch up with old friends from the RCA. To win the CSR RCA Prize has been a wonderful experience, and with the prize money I will be able to travel to Finland for more professional development on a residency this summer".

Natalia Grabowska, Assistant Curator, The Serpentine Galleries, said: "Travers Smith manifest an extraordinary engagement, commitment and interest in art through their collection that is dedicated entirely to recent graduates of art courses. By investing in art of the young generation, they are not only able to have a dynamic collection, but also provide a vital support at such a crucial stage of the artists’ practice. Through all the activities including acquisition, award and the mentorship, Travers Smith encourages and enables a further development of an artist’s career. Travers Smith’s commitment to artists and access to the arts is extended through their support of the Serpentine Galleries and we are delighted to engage with their unique and impactful arts programme."

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