Interview with New Sensations Curator, Rebecca Wilson, London

New Sensations is due to open on October 9. Showcasing the best in graduate talent, New Sensations, developed by the Saatchi Gallery, is aimed at shining a light on the best emerging artists. Alongside the exhibition will be Channel 4’s The Future Can Wait, an ambitious presentation of young artists offering an alternative experience to the traditional gallery and art fair systems. Together, the two shows make up the largest exhibition of developing art to take place during London’s Frieze Week. Aesthetica speaks to the New Sensations curator, Rebecca Wilson.

A: When putting New Sensations together, what were you looking for?
RW: Work that even at this early stage suggests an original talent and a distinctive perspective on the world. We are looking for fresh ideas that have been exceptionally well executed, and hopefully something that we haven’t seen before.

A: The finalists get to create a short film about the creation of their art, do you think it’s important to cast light on the production of art as well as the final product?
RW: We want to give the artists a chance to make a work in a different medium and to reveal something about their process through these short films. It is also very interesting for people to see what goes on behind the scenes as an artist is making work, whether it’s getting a glimpse of their studio or finding out more about the source of their ideas for a particular work. It helps to make contemporary art more accessible to people and to help people to understand and appreciate the final work that is made. Having this kind of access to an artist’s working methods doesn’t happen very often which is why our collaboration with Channel 4 is so important.

A: There are four finalists, what made their work a cut above the rest?
RW: The decision was very difficult but we felt their work showed exceptional promise and were eager to give them the chance to make a new work to present at the exhibition and to see how they might extend their work after finishing their degree.

A: What do you want guests to get out of the exhibition?
RW: We want to give people the chance to see some of the best work being made by young emerging artists in the UK. This is one of the few opportunities that people have to see in one show work from all over the country by young artists, some of whom will go on to become the art stars of the future. The show gives people a chance to discover new art and to buy work at reasonable prices before these artists get taken on by galleries and their prices increase.

A: What was it that drew you to developing New Sensations for art graduates?
RW: I started the prize six years ago as there was nothing like it for students leaving art school. Post-graduation is one of the hardest times as graduates lose their college studio space and all the infrastructure that comes with that. I wanted to find a way to provide support for these young artists and to give them really vital exposure to a wider audience. This is why we do the show during Frieze Week and we are really thrilled that the exhibition attracts such a strong international audience.

New Sensations, 9-14 October, B1, Victoria House, Bloomsbury Square, WC1B 4DA.

1. Rachel Hunt, Breakfast in Luxor II, 2012, courtesy of Rachel Hunt.
2. Aileen McEwen, An Interior Light, 2012, courtesy of Aileen McEwen.
3. Antonio Marguet, Exotic Juice Tutti Frutti, 2011, courtesy of Antonio Marguet.
4. Jin Han Lee, Volcano Duck and Three Moo Boxes, 2012, courtesy of Jin Han Lee.
5. Steven Allan, Peely Wally, 2012, Oil on canvas, courtesy of Steven Allan.