New International Art Award Launched

The Vasseur BALTIC Artists' Award
10 April 2022
Tim Bliss (right) Isabel's husband and Roman Vassseur (left) one of Isabel's son's at the launch event
Tim Bliss (right) Isabel's husband and Roman Vassseur (left) one of Isabel's son's at the launch event
Launched by Sarah Munro, Director and her team at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art on April 8th. We will be raising funds through our activities this year at Houghton Hall Stables in support the next set of artists' commissions due to be awarded in 2024.
The Award is already funded for the 2022 iteration. Otobong Nkanga has nominated Ima-Abasi Okon, Mika Rottenberg has nominated Laleh Khorramian and Hito Steyerl has nominated Fernando García-Dory.
Norfolk resident Isabel Vasseur was a lecturer as well as a public art consultant inspiring a generation of curators and many artists. She encouraged artists to produce their best work for public spaces, the built environment, gardens and green spaces.
Early in her career Isabel set the creative direction of two of the National Garden Festivals, Glasgow 1988 and then Gateshead in 1990, that spearheaded the cultural regeneration of these two former industrial areas. She commissioned local and internationally acclaimed artists to create installations along the banks of the River Clyde and Tyne, attracting huge numbers of visitors.
It is therefore appropriate that the Avant Gardeners exhibition honours the memory of this influential and dynamic advocate for the arts by directing financial contributions to the award this year.


About the author

Paul Barratt, Director and Curator at Contemporary and Country

Paul Barratt

Paul Barratt started working in contemporary art galleries in 1989, having graduated in Fine Art from Goldmsith’s, London University. He initially worked at Anthony d’Offay Gallery, one of the contemporary art dealers, who dominated the London art market in the 80s and 90s. He was approached by the Lisson Gallery to be gallery manager for the influential art dealer Nicholas Logsdail. This was followed by a short period in New York at Gladstone Gallery, to work for visionary art dealer Barbara Gladstone, working with the artist and filmmaker Matthew Barney.


On his return to London, Paul secured a place on the postgraduate curatorial course at the Royal College of Art, to complete an MA. After graduation in 2001, he worked as an independent curator on several projects in Oslo, London, Brighton and Basel, before joining Paul Vater at his design agency Sugarfree in 2004. He has worked with Paul ever since.