Open to Art, International Competition for Art and Design Ceramics - 2017

officine-saffiAwards Ceremony and Finalists Exhibition
OPEN TO ART, International Competition for Art and Design Ceramics

Officine Saffi I via Aurelio Saffi, 7 I Milan Italy - 1 - 16 March 2017
Opening reception 28 February 2017, 6.30pm

Officine Saffi is pleased to invite you to the exhibition of works by the 30 finalists in the second edition of Open to Art, International Competition for Art and Design Ceramics. During the course of the evening, the winners of the second edition of the Open to Art competition will be announced.

Open to Art was created to enhance and promote the use of ceramics in contemporary art and design, identifying points of excellence and the most innovative trends in terms of language and technique. The number of applicants has reached significant levels, demonstrating the interest in the prize, now at its second edition, at an international level. There were 300 applicants, of which 210 for the Art section and 90 for the Design section, from 48 countries, including all five continents.

From these applicants, the jury selected 30 finalists (20 for the Art Ceramics section, 10 for the Design Ceramics section) from 18 countries.
The international jury comprised Alberto Biagetti (Museo del Design 1880-1980), Laura Borghi (gallery owner, Officine Saffi, Milan, creator and promoter of the prize), Aileesh Carew (Project Director–Design & Crafts Council of Ireland), Carlotta De Bevilacqua (Architect, designer, Vice President of Artemide and President of Danese Milano), Mette Blum-Marcher (director of Guldagergaard), Paolo Dell'Elce (designer specializing in furnishings, lighting and other design objects), Flaminio Gualdoni (professor and art critic), Franco Marrocco (Director of the Brera Academy of Fine Arts), Shozo Michikawa (artist) and Kristina Riska (artist). The jury will select the winners of the second edition of Open to Art, to be announced on 28 February 2017 during the inauguration of the exhibition presenting all the finalist works.


The competition awards two prizes, 5,000 euro each, for two categories, Art and Design.

In addition to the first prize in each category, there are also three Artist's Residencies, respectively in Japan for ICAF (International Ceramic Art Festival, Sasama) from mid October to the end of November 2017, at Studio Amfora in Seinäjoki (Finland), and at Guldagergaard in Denmark.
Two other awards will be assigned for Production, one with FABLAB Milan, and one with the Carlo Zauli Museum, Faenza.
A special prize will be reserved for people under 30 by the Brera Academy of Fine Arts, and a Solo Show Prize will be offered by Museo del Design 1880-1980, Milan. A Special Prize of 500 euro will be offered by Fondazione Cologni dei Mestieri d'Arte. Furthermore, two special mentions offered by La Ceramica in Italia e nel mondo.

Open to Art was created through the passion and many years of experience of the Officine Saffi Project group, whose objective is to promote the knowledge, public familiarity, use, collection and production of ceramics for art and design, in all its forms. Officine Saffi Project comprises the Officine Saffi Ceramic Arts Gallery, the workshop Officine Saffi Lab in Milan, and the magazine La Ceramica in Italia e nel mondo.


The finalists in the two categories of the second edition of Open to Art are:

Art Section

Baek KyungWon (KR) - Benedan Michela (IT) - Bingham Anna (UK) - Bittl Petra (DE) - Boševski Lidia (HR) - Casentini Enrica (IT) - Cooper Robert (UK) - Eastman Ken (UK) - Fløche Anne (DK) - Gardiner Emily (UK) - Huang Hua-Chen (TW) - Jalkh Heidi (CO) - Laleman Lut (BE) - Louis Frank (DE) - Onozawa Koichi (JP) - Pérez Rafael (ES) - Razumovskaya Irina (RU) - Taruta Hiroshi (JP) - Thorup Charlotte (DK) - Zanardi Serena (IT)


Frank Louis "Fulfillingness" - 1st Prize Art Section - 5000€
"Frank is an open-minded explorer, his works reflect his contemporary approach to ceramics, together with his research on other materials. The artist plays with the viewer's perception of reality" - The Jury


Design Section

Enjalbert Sylvie (FR) - Lee Ahryun (KR) - Lirhus Falke Svatun (NO) - O'Rorke Margaret (UK) - Paronetto Paola (IT) - Sironi Roberto (IT) - Turkoglu Erin (US) - Venables Prue (UK) - Walsh Andrea (UK) - Zahareas Louisa (GR)

Andrea Walsh "Contained box" - 1st Prize Design Section - 5000€
"Andrea, with her oustanding technique and vision, is able to turn raw materials into something timeless, immaterial and poetic" - The Jury

 Other prizes:

  • Serena Zanardi (Artist in Residence, Sasama, Japan)
  • Lut Laleman (Artist in Residence, Guldagergaard, Denmark)
  • Enrica Casentini (Artist in Residence, Seinajoki, Finland)
  • Heidi Jalkh (Solo Show Prize, Museo del Design 1880-1980)
  • Ahryun Lee (Under 30 Prize, Accademia di Brera)
  • Louisa Zahareas (Production Prize, Museo Carlo Zauli)
  • Michela Benedan (Production Prize, FabLab Milano)
  • Rafael Pérez (Special Prize, Fondazione Cologni dei Mestieri d'Arte)
  • Ken Eastman (Front Cover, La Ceramica in Italia e nel mondo)
  • Charlotte Thorup (Special Mention - Article on La Ceramica in Italia e nel mondo)

 The event was organized in collaboration with:

Main sponsor:


Under the patronage of:

comune-milano fond-cologni logo mic-faenza


Opening times: from Monday to Friday, from 10am to 6.30pm, Saturday from 11am to 6pm.
Sunday by appointment.
Admission free

Visitor information: +39 02 36 68 56 96 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - www.officinesaffi.con