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Different take on art hits screen.

One of the first fruits of advertising agency Different's move into television production hit the nation's screens last night.

The Big Art Challenge is a Pop Idol-style programme produced by Newcastle-based Different for Channel Five.

The programme involves a nationwide art competition aiming to discover the next Damien Hirst or John Constable.

It is being judged by award-winning art critic Brian Sewell, designer Wayne Hemingway and artist Jane Wilson and is presented by former Animal Hospital presenter Edwina Silver.

The competition has involved 100 artists competing in four regional heats. From these heats, 40 artists were selected to produce a second piece of work. These artists then put their second piece of work before the judges at a national heat.

Eventually 10 of these 40 will progress, on the strength of their second piece of work, to the grand final on Monday, November 15, when the judges will announce which artist has won the pounds 10,000 prize.

Ben Quigley, managing director of Different, said: "The Big Art Challenge is six 30-minute programmes, and lots of people nationally are talking about it.

"This (getting into television) is a big thing for us. We have to explain to people where we are coming from, in utilising the same talent base as with our other work. We see major marketing companies trying to buy up companies in TV production, and we are at the forefront of what's going on in this area."
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 15, 2004
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