The Fondation d’entreprise Herm.s announces a call for applications for the fourth Skills Academy, the Foundation’s major programme devoted to artisan expertise and innovation, centred on a specific raw material. With a focus on textiles, the 2019 session marks an expansion of the programme’s activities: each new Academy will now incorporate a broader examination of key economic and societal issues connected to the chosen theme.

Posted 16 March 2018

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Held biennially since 2014, the Skills Academy invites artisans, designers and engineers to come together to explore innovations in the field of artisan expertise. Initially convened for a nine-month period (the first three editions), the Academy will now be held over eleven months, from January to November.
Each Academy features a calendar of events implemented by the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès to explore artisan skills and technical innovations in the sector. The programme is designed to enable participants to enrich their knowledge at lectures and masterclasses led by experts in their field, before honing their skills at workshops conceived as an experimental laboratory for new techniques.
The Academy combines skills transmission with shared exploration for innovation.
The first Academy explored the theme of wood (directed by Patrick Jouin), the second clay (under Guillaume Bardet), and the third metal (directed by Normal Studio – Jean-Fran.ois Dingjian and Eloi Chafa.). The fourth Academy is devoted to textiles, under programme director matali crasset. Changes for the latest edition include the creation of a qualified steering committee to be chaired by matali crasset. The committee is mandated to define the key issues to be addressed by participants over the course of the Academy.
The Skills Academy embodies the Foundation’s core mission to support artisans, creative artists and actors in the solidarity sector as they forge new expertise to spearhead change now and into the future. In consolidating the Academy’s position as one of our foremost programmes, the Foundation reaffirms its commitment to promote exchange between the worlds of design and artisanship.
We seek to further emphasise the Academy’s experimental work based on shared intelligence, and to enhance its focus on the vital issue of sustainable development.

Who can apply for the Skills Academy?
The Academy is a programme of continuing professional development, aimed at skilled practitioners. The fourth edition, focusing on textiles, invites applications from artisan textile practitioners (upholsterers and tapestry-makers, weavers, haberdashers, finishers, designers, textile restorers, loom-setters, tailors, embroiderers and more), designers and engineers specialising in textiles and related sectors (chemicals, textile production and mechanics, etc.)
The Academy will select twenty French-speaking professionals currently active in France and neighbouring countries: ten artisans, five designers, five engineers.
When to apply?
Applications open on April 3 and close on July 5, 2018.
How to apply?
Applications must be made online through the website of the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès.
Candidates must submit:
– Cover letter (maximum 2 pages)
–      C.V.      
Candidates may also submit:
– A short, filmed presentation providing a succinct overview of the candidate’s
expectations as a Skills Academy participant, their reasons for applying to the fourth Academy, and their particular interest in the Academy topic (maximum length 5 minutes).
– A portfolio of work.
The Fondation d’entreprise Hermès supports men and women seeking
to learn, perfect, transmit and celebrate the creative skills that shape
our lives today and into the future.
The Foundation operates eight major programmes with a combined focus
on skills, creativity and transmission: New Settings for the performing arts,
Exhibitions and Artists’ Residencies for the visual arts, Immersion
for photography, Manufacto – the Skills Factory and our Skills Academy
for the discovery and perfection of artisan trades. H3 is the Foundation’s
worldwide programme of support for organisations whose work reflects these
central aims. Our Biodiversity programme enacts a core commitment
to protect fragile ecosystems for future generations.
The Foundation’s diverse activities are governed by a single, over-arching belief: Our gestures define us.

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