The Financial Times and OppenheimerFunds Launch 2016 Emerging Voices Awards

New York, February 2, 2016: The Financial Times and OppenheimerFunds today announced the launch of the second annual FT/OppenheimerFunds Emerging Voices Awards, a global initiative designed to recognize artistic talent in emerging-market nations.* The winners in three categories – art, fiction, and film – will be announced in September 2016. Each winner will receive a $40,000 award, and two runners-up per category will receive $5,000.

“We are delighted to launch the Emerging Voices arts awards with OppenheimerFunds for the second year. The Financial Times has reported and analysed the rise of the emerging market economies and followed their political trajectories for years. These awards show our determination to learn more about, and reward, their cultural richness too,” said Michael Skapinker, FT associate editor and chair of the judges.

The 2016 Emerging Voices Awards follow the success of the inaugural program, which launched in December 2014 and garnered submissions from over 800 artists in 65 emerging-market nations. Last year, Yuhang Ho ofMalaysia won the Emerging Voices film award for “Trespassed;” Chigozie Obioma of Nigeria won the Emerging Voices fiction award for “The Fishermen;” and Cristina Planas of Peru won the Emerging Voices art award for “Vultures,” “Table of Negotiations,” “Mass Grave,” and “Coloured Christ.”

“The quality of the submissions we received during our first Emerging Voices Awards program was extraordinary,” said Justin Leverenz, Director of Emerging Market Equities at OppenheimerFunds and Founder of the Emerging Voices Awards. “I am honored to continue this program to help provide a global stage to feature the visionary talent, creativity, and originality of artists from emerging-market nations.”

This year’s Emerging Voices Awards will be open to residents or passport holders of emerging-market nations in three categories:

  1. Africa: The art award for painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, or mixed media.
  2. Asia-Pacific: The fiction award for works published in English.
  3. Latin America and the Caribbean: The film award for works completed between January 1, 2015, andMarch 31, 2016. Films can be in any language but must have English subtitles.

The award winners will be chosen by a panel of judges who are influential in art, fiction, and film. The judges aim to recognize the artist in each category whose work shows outstanding talent and in some way furthers understanding of his or her region. Last year’s judges included Mira Nair, Elif Shafak, and Jorge Tacla.

“As a leading global asset manager, we strive to uncover innovative and entrepreneurial companies in the emerging markets for our investors,'” says Art Steinmetz, Chairman and CEO of OppenheimerFunds. “Likewise, we are pleased to work with the Financial Times again this year to help highlight and recognize remarkable artists in these countries.”

Submissions will open on February 1, 2016, and submission guidelines can be found here. The longlist for each category will be announced in June 2016. Shortlisted entrants from each category will be announced in August 2016. All shortlisted participants will be flown to New York for an awards gala on September 26, 2016, at the New York Public Library where the category winners will be announced.