Iman Sidonie-Samuels Wins Prestigious Art Prize for “3049 Calls, 19,401 Minutes

Iman Sidonie-Samuels, a student specializing in sculpture at Central Saint Martins, has been awarded a prestigious art prize for her outstanding work titled “3049 Calls, 19,401 Minutes.”

The artwork was created using 81 paper phone bills collected from her grandmother’s house in St. Lucia.

This accomplishment was a significant moment for the young artist, who described the win as “an out-of-body experience.”

Exploring a Personal Relationship

Sidonie-Samuels explained that her artwork beautifully documents the “personal relationship” between her and her grandmother, who resided in the Caribbean island of St. Lucia, while she lived in London.

Through her work, she sought to capture the essence of their connection, which spanned the physical distance between two islands.

She believed that this theme resonated not only with her own family’s experience but also with the second and third generations of the Windrush era, who shared similar stories of transatlantic relationships.

A Proud Grandmother’s Legacy

The unexpected win was not just a personal achievement for Iman Sidonie-Samuels but also an opportunity to share her grandmother’s legacy with a wider audience.

She felt that her grandmother, who had always encouraged her to focus on her studies, would be proud of her accomplishments.

Sidonie-Samuels cherished the idea that her grandmother’s spirit would continue to offer words of encouragement even after her passing.

Recognition for an Emotional Artwork

Helen Nisbet, the CEO and artistic director of Cromwell Place, where the shortlisted works were exhibited, played a crucial role in selecting the winner.

She described Sidonie-Samuels’s artwork as resembling “an oral history.”

Nisbet highlighted the deep connection between grandparents and their grandchildren, often only fully realized after the older generation has passed away.

She emphasized that Sidonie-Samuels’s work encapsulated this profound reality.

Celebrating Individuality through Art

Iman Sidonie-Samuels was one of the 12 shortlisted artists selected from a pool of applicants for this year’s prize.

The theme of the competition, “a portrait of you,” encouraged artists to express themselves and showcase their individuality and personality through their art forms.

In recognition of her exceptional work, Sidonie-Samuels was awarded the £5,000 prize along with a bespoke fragrance experience by Frédéric Malle.

The shortlisted artworks will remain on display at Cromwell Place until Sunday, offering art enthusiasts a chance to appreciate the diverse expressions of self through art.

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