Vermeer off in a new direction this Christmas...

Published: 21 December 2011 at 13:20

Anglia Ruskin competition encourages a modern take on a Dutch master

Life can imitate art in Cambridge this Christmas as budding film-makers are being encouraged to find inspiration in the work of Johannes Vermeer, the master of Dutch domestic life, and capture their own festive scenes.

Anglia Ruskin University is running a competition for 14-18 year olds based on the Vermeer’s Women: Silence and Secrets exhibition, which is running at Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge until 15 January.

The aim is to see how themes and approaches which were devised by Vermeer and his 17th century contemporaries might be adapted to today’s tools – namely the video cameras on our mobile phones – and our different domestic preoccupations. 

Young film-makers are encouraged to produce a two-minute film based on scenes observed in Cambridge homes over the Christmas period.  Would the famous Lacemaker today be reading her Kindle?  Would The Music Lesson now be taking place on a Wii rather than a harpsichord?

All shortlisted films will feature in a public exhibition at the Ruskin Gallery on Anglia Ruskin’s Cambridge campus, and the producer of the winning film will receive £250, with further prizes of £100 (runner-up) and £50 (third place) up for grabs.

Trish Sheil, Film Education Officer at Cambridgeshire Film Consortium, said:

“This competition is an exciting development of a current Consortium/Fitzwilliam Museum project inspired by the Vermeer exhibition, in which Anglia Ruskin students produced beautifully innovative, short films which were screened before Girl With a Pearl Earring at the Cambridge Arts Picturehouse. 
“Extending this opportunity to a younger age group encourages them to explore how the exhibition resonates with their own creative practice.  It also offers a wonderful opportunity to see their films screened in the digital Ruskin Gallery at Anglia Ruskin University.”

The competition is open to anyone aged 14-18 and entries must be received by 2 January 2012.  To submit a film visit