Among its different cultural activities, the Bettencourt-Schueller Foundation encompasses as well the promotion and protection of the French métiers d’art of excellence. The award it bestows every year, the Prix Liliane Bettencourt pour l’Intelligence de la Main, is regarded as one of the most relevant in the world. Every year two awards are given: the winners of the 2016 edition have just been announced.
The “Talent d’Exception” award is dedicated to a great master artisan who proposes an extraordinary masterpiece: the winner is Didier Mutel, engraver, for his work R217A. It is an artistic book of 160 pages, realized in white ink on silk paper and presented in a white corian box. The volume reports the ONU resolution on human rights, from which it derives its name.
The “Dialogues” award is dedicated to the collaboration between creativity and fine craftsmanship: the 2016 winner is the “Vitrail de 100 visages”, the incredible new stained-glass window for the Saint Catherine chapel of the Strasbourg cathedral. Realized by photographer Véronique Ellena and by master glass-maker Pierre-Alain Parot, the monumental work represents the Christ of Flemish painter Hans Memling: the Saviour’s face has been realized with the photographic images of the people of Strasbourg who decided to participate in the initiative, while his tunic is a collage of photos representing the beauty of nature. An innovative technique has been expressly developed, to make sure the photos printed on glass stand the test of time.