Zhang Yimou

Revitalizing the mentor

Article: Revitalizing the mentor

History is filled with stories of inspiring mentor-protégé relationships, from XX and the painters Camille Pissaro and Paul Cezanne to fictional accounts like Don Pedro and Claudio in Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. Mentorships are a time-tested way to for an artist to develop their vision and their craft. They, traditionally, give someone time learn, grow and create under the watchful eye of someone who has already blazed a trail.

Rolex is dedicating to reviving the tradition of mentorship by pairing young, promising artists with leaders in their fields. It’s easy to see what the protégés have to gain. They get a year of time to learn from their mentors. But, a truely successful mentor-protégé relationship benefits both parties. As we take a look back at the results of these exciting relationships, let’s take a look at what some of the Rolex Arts Initiative mentors have gotten out of their year collaboration:

Rolex mentor and protégé: director Zhang Yimou and Annemarie Jacir

Article: Rolex mentor and protégé: director Zhang Yimou and Annemarie Jacir

When Chinese director and Rolex Arts Initiative mentor, Zhang Yimou, was asked to select a protĂ©gĂ© more than a year ago, he said he chose Palestinian filmmaker Annemarie Jacir “because of her work and background. We Chinese have a special affinity with Third World countries like Palestine. I fully support people from developing nations who dream of filming in their own land.” Yimou makes colorful, monumental films like A WOMAN, A GUN AND A NOODLE SHOP (2009), HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS (2004), HERO (2002) and RAISE THE RED LANTERN (1991). He has won awards at festivals around the world and yes, even at our beloved Sundance (for THE ROAD HOME). He just completed his next film, THE FLOWERS OF WAR, a story about “Chinese sex workers in 1937 [who] volunteer to replace university students as escorts for invading Japanese soldiers.” It stars Christian Bale and opens in China next month…

The 2010/11 Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative

Article: The 2010/11 Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative

Yesterday, Brian Eno made an appearance at the New York Public Library to introduce a work by his musical protĂ©gĂ©, Ben Frost. It was part of a weekend of performances marking the end of the fifth cycle of the Rolex Mentor and ProtĂ©gé Arts Initiative, a year-long program that pairs promising young artists with masters in their field for a year of creative collaboration. This year saw artist Anish Kapoor paired with Nicholas Hlobo, choreographer Trisha Brown with Lee Serle, filmmaker Zhang Yimou with Annemarie Jacir, “polymath patrician” Hans Magnus Enzensberger with Tracy K. Smith, dramaturge Peter Sellars with Maya Zbib as well as Eno and Frost. The opportunity to work alongside such world-renowned artists is so coveted and exclusive that nominees are selected by an anonymous panel of experts who conduct an exhaustive international search…