The 2015 Nando’s Art Initiative crowns new champions

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Nando’s three-month journey of searching for young and fresh artistic talents as part of its popular annual art initiative came to a head last week when the winners were announced across three categories — fine art, digital and graffiti. The theme of this year’s competition, which is now in its eighth year, was Your Art, Your Story and attracted an impressive 964 submissions, almost double from last year.

“We believe that art is not something we can create blindly; it is something one must feel and embody in order to render real inspiration. Your Art, Your Story was definitely the best choice for this year’s theme and it has been proven by these young talents who have poured their heart and soul into their creations,” said Mac Chung Lynn, group CEO of Nando’s Chickenland for Malaysia and Singapore at the awards announcement, which was held last week at Publika Shopping Gallery in Solaris Dutamas.

In the fine art category, Hug Yin Wan from DASEIN Academy of Art walked away as the grand prize winner with his masterpiece, Relationship, while Tan Yong Lin from Multimedia University emerged as the grand prize winner in the Digital Art sphere with his blooming gem entitled Irreversible. In the graffiti art category, 10 finalists battled it out at Avenue K last month in which four finalists were identified, and Mohd Zulfadli bin Ahmad Nawawi emerged as the grand prize winner with I Need More.

All works were judged based on originality and creativity, the story — concept and ideas, quality of design and composition, use of medium and artistic finish, and overall impression. This year’s competition saw a diverse and distinguished panel of judges comprising Mac, founding member of the Alternative Printing Group Izan Tahir, self-taught artist Marvin Chan, former Nando’s Art Competition winner Hirzaq Haris, head of content innovation at Primeworks Studio Nini Ramlan and painter and illustrator Kenji Chai. Syed Nabil Syed Nahar of NN Gallery is the chief adviser of the project.

All the winners took home cash prizes and vouchers, although the champions in the fine art and digital art categories will also benefit from a fully-sponsored solo exhibition.

Artworks from a total of 78 finalists across all three categories are currently on display as part of a temporary exhibition at Publika, which organisers say is one of Kuala Lumpur’s largest art exhibition for young emerging artists that is open to the public. Collectors who are keen to acquire any of the shortlisted artworks may own a piece of this youthful ingenuity through an open silent auction. Bidding begins at RM500.

The full selection of artworks will be on display at the concourse area of Publika until June 7, after which it will be moved to Nando’s branch located at Lot 123, level 2 & 3, Jalan Sultan, Kuala Lumpur, until July 19. For more information on Nando’s Art Initiative, visit www.nandos.com.my/artinitiative.

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This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on June 1, 2015.