Rolex Mentor and Protege Arts Initiative

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The Rolex Mentor and Protege Arts Initiative is a philanthropic program started by the company in 2002 that pairs masters of different artistic disciplines with proteges that are selected by anonymous panels. 

The proteges are meant to spend 6 weeks with their mentors over the course of a year, though most spend far more time together. The masters either allow the protege to observe them at work or work on collaborative projects together. 

Once selected, proteges receive $25,000 Swiss francs and a stipend for travel and expenses involved in the program. At the end of the program, an additional $25,000 Swiss francs is available to any protege who chooses to create new work with it. Mentors receive an honorarium of $75,000 Swiss francs to compensate for their time and expenses in partaking in the program. Past mentors include Margaret Atwood, Toni Morrison, Alejandro Iñárritu and Martin Scorsese.

mentors for rolex art initiative
Mentors for Cycle 8 of Rolex Mentor and Protege Arts Initiative 

The mentors for Cycle 8, which begins in 2016, were announced on December 6, 2015 during Rolex Arts Weekend, an event marking the end of the 2014 - 2015 cycle, at Centro Cultural del Bosque's Teatro Julio Castillo in Mexico City.

This cycle's mentors include: David Chipperfield for Architecture, Mia Couto for Literature, Robert Lepage for Theater, Joan Jonas for Visual Art, Ohad Naharin for Dance, Philip Glass for Music and Alfonso Cuaron for Film.

In February of 2016, finalists were announced for four categories: dance, literature, theater and visual arts. The list of finalists is available on the Mentor and Protege Arts Initiative official site.

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