We've had musical reality TV shows looking for the next Maria and Nancy, and an international online dance contest launched by Sadler's Wells – and now Charles Saatchi is looking for the best of Britain's undiscovered art talent. The project, called Saatchi's Best of British, is inviting artists from any discipline to apply online, with three to five images of their work, before 29 March (artists must be over 18 and not already represented by a gallery).
A panel of judges including Tracey Emin and Kate Bush, head of art galleries at the Barbican, will whittle down the entries to a final 50, from which Saatchi will choose a shortlist of six. Those six will then be tutored at a specially set up art school in east London for three months over the summer, working on a piece of art upon which Saatchi will ultimately judge them.
The prize? One lucky winner will show his or her work in the Saatchi Gallery's forthcoming exhibition, Newspeak: British Art Now, at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg before having it exhibited in London.
Of course, a project like this wouldn't be complete without a television collaboration, so every stage of the process, from the panel's initial selections to the art school and exhibition in Russia, will be captured for a documentary series on BBC2, to be broadcast this autumn.
To apply, visit www.submityourart.com