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MAD IN MADEIRA art competition and exhibition of young artists of Madeira

"Mad in Madeira" is a pilot project created by ARThubMadeira and the Art Center Caravel's summer art residency program.

This competition is also part of the nARTure project and the result of cooperation between Spain, Greece, and Portugal. The project is supported by the Erasmus Plus program and co-funded by the European Union.

The project involved an exhibition and competition for young artists who are passionate about Madeira's natural beauty, energy, and contemporary issues such as sustainability, ecological living, and the island's future.

Seven artists with distinct styles and unique ideas participated in the contest, which opened on June 6th, 2023, and closed on July 5th, 2023.

The exhibition featured 20 pieces of art, and the participants were challenged to represent what the island inspired in them, paying special attention to nature and the elements in it, and approaching conversations about the environment, climate change, and sustainability.

The seven participants were Lara de Campos, Luiza Lacerda, Vanessa Aleixo, Karolina Jankiewicz, Rodrigo Franco, Érica Gomes, and Cláudia Escórcio.

All of them were young artists between the ages of 18 and 25, with or without academic education.

The exhibition opened on August 11th, 2023, and was curated by Cláudia Escórcio, who also shares her experience in the following text along with Mericia Dantas, our intern. We invite you to read about their experiences and visit the exhibition before it ends.

"The inauguration was a pleasant surprise, as the opening to the public of such varied works proved the talent of young people and that there is space for all types of art. Attended by the artists and their families, friends, and v

isitors who gradually joined in. A great opportunity for young artists to show their work. The educational and sharing environment creates the opportunity for young people to get to know each other share experiences, work, and establish a network of contacts for future projects.

There was no lack of compliments for the young people's work and the exhibition itself since the way in which each work is displayed is fundamental to highlighting the work. A sophisticated layout that gives primacy to naturalistic elements and enhances the theme and origin of the Mad In Madeira competition."

The first-time art curator, Cláudia Escórcio, had the opportunity of directing and producing an art exhibition all by herself, with the help of our gallery coordinator, Svetlana Azernikova. Some of her work included the management of deadlines, the art pieces, and even her own creation of art pieces.

To close this inauguration in the best possible way, a certificate of participation and respective prizes were awarded to the 3 winners, which obviously generated a moment of happiness and pride for the ones present. A panel of juries assembled by our coordinator picked their favorite works and who should win the contest.

In first place, the winner was Karolina Jankiewicz, the Polish photographer who is currently residing in Madeira Island while she does her art residency. Karolina did a 3 set piece for her work: COMMUNITY, a photographic portrait printed on fabric with traditional embroidery of Madeira; NATURE, a set of 5 photos from Madeira Island; and IT, a sculpture made of clay.


The second place went to our art curator, Cláudia Escórcio. Cláudia made a set of 6 hand-made prints from flora found around Madeira Island, that belongs to the flora and fauna of Laurisilva forest. All the prints followed a 6 color scheme, inspired by pop art with the use of vibrant colors and overlapping. The project was a critique of the exploitation of certain floras for capitalism, and the extinction of others.


The third place was won by Lara de Campos, a visual artist, part of the Quimera collective. Lara made a 5 piece set of paintings and a book about four species of butterflies, endemic to Madeira. The book is a journey through nature, where she gathered all the butterfly species that can be found on the island. An attempt to raise awareness of the protection of the island's fauna.


The emotion of seeing the work recognized became the main feeling, the effort and dedication somehow paid off. In this way, happy and motivated, the inauguration of the exhibition ended, and it's now open to the public until 11 September.

When asked about participating in Mad In Madeira this was what Vanessa Aleixo, the artist who produced a mixed-technique mosaic called “A Pietà Madeirense”, had to say:

“For me, participating in the exhibition was a unique experience, as it was the first time I participated in an art exhibition. I think it was challenging and put our creativity to the test with the theme of sustainability, climate change, and Madeiran materials. At first, it seemed difficult to reconcile, which made the experience even more rewarding when seeing the results I obtained.”


According to Rodrigo Franco, creator of the project “Venda de Maiá”, another artist that participated in Mad In Madeira:

“Participating in the exhibition led me to create and bring ideas about Madeira to life, developing creative skills in the process. Together with the messages conveyed by the other participants that made the exhibition more complex and meaningful.”


With this beautiful thought by Rodrigo, we finish our weekly blog post and encourage all artists out there to reach out and take part in this artistic community called ARThubMadeira.



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