Dedicated to the creation of plastic art works on a water theme, the Foundation’s aim is to provide a platform each year enabling yet unknown artists to reveal their talent.

Through the competition  “Contemporary Talents” competition, François Schneider wishes to support these creative artists by acquiring their works and showcasing them at the Foundation’s center of art, entirely dedicated to the meeting of art and water. Situated at the foot of the Vieil Armand memorial site, in the village of Wattwiller in Haut-Rhin, the Centre d’Art have over 4,500 m² of exhibition space.


Yves Chaudouët – Contemporary Talents 2011


Mehdi Meddaci – Contemporary Talents 2012


Yoav Admoni, Antoine Gonin, Harald Hund, Olivier Leroi – Contemporary Talents 2013


Objectives of the “Contemporary Talents” competition

Through the “Contemporary Talents” competition, the Foundation wishes:

  • to encourage artists to appropriate this theme which has belonged to the history of art since the beginning of time.
  • to bring them, through art work, to reflect, observe, analyse and criticise, to divert and use water, its properties, its symbols, its tools, its challenges,
  • to offer the artists a platform to reach
  • all kinds of audiences.
  • to foster exchanges and networking with cultural players.
  • to develop the public’s awareness, and in particular to arouse an interest in contemporary art in young people, and enable them, through the water theme, to feel and get a better perception of the diversity of views of the world.

The theme: water

Water, essential to all life and to the development of mankind, is a multi-faceted and yet singular element. It is symbolically one of the natural elements, with air, fire and earth, which make up the universe.

It is at heart of mythology and religion. It is a sign and a symbol, and constantly changes form. Water is a natural resource, of course, but for a large part of mankind, it is the rarest asset.

Competition rules

This competition is open to candidates of all nationalities, all ages, and in the following disciplines of the plastic arts: painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, photography, video or any other domain of the plastic arts.

For installations and sculptures, the artists have the possibility of submitting either an existing work or a project.
For other disciplines, only existing work may be presented.

Participation in this contest implies full acceptance of the terms of settlement “Contemporary Talents”

Each candidate may only submit one work or one project.


Each year, the François Schneider Foundation devotes to the “Contemporary Talents” competition a maximum budget of €300,000, which is divided into two parts:

€140,000 for the acquisition of seven works The candidates chosen will be:

  • a maximum of 7 prize-winners “Contemporary Talents”, who will each receive 20,000 Euros for the acquisition of their work.

€160,000 for the realisation of the works presented in project form.

For the artists who submit their work (installation or sculpture) in project form, the candidatures must include a detailed budget for the production costs with a quotation.

The “Contemporary Talents” competition will give rise to a collective exhibition at the centre d’art, and a bilingual publication presenting the works of the prize-winners. Each candidate may only submit one work or one project.



Artists are invited to submit their offerings on the water theme, realistic or utopian, figurative or abstract,
whilst offering a singular and sensitive viewpoint on this theme.

Four experts committees and an International Panel of Judges will meet successively:


The four committees will each be made up of two art and culture professionals and their mission will be
to identify among all the works or projects received, about forty file that will be presented to the International Panel of Judges.


This panel, chaired by Jean-Noël Jeanneney, will include well-known personalities from the arts world:
an internationally renowned artist, managers of art institutions, a collector. They will choose from among
about forty file, 7 prize-winners “Contemporary Talents” all of whose works will be acquired by the Foundation.