The Japan Foundation
Performing Arts Network Japan
The Rolex Institute
The Rolex Institute
Rolex World Headquarters in Geneva
Rolex S.A.
rue François-Dussaud 3-5-7
Case postale 1755
1211 Genève 26 Switzerland
Tel.: + 41 22 302 22 00
Fax: + 41 22 300 22 55
Arts Organization of the Month Arts Organization of the Month
The Rolex Institute 
The Rolex Institute is an international philanthropic organization of the world famous quality watch maker Rolex S.A. (Founded: 1905; Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland) that was founded with the aim of encouraging and bringing increased recognition to visionary individuals who make a meaningful contribution to the world in which we live through their exceptional talent, quality and achievements in the fields of science, culture, education and the arts. The philanthropic activities of Rolex are driven by the same type of strong will that characterized the company’s founder, Hans Wilsdorf, a man known for his spirit of enterprise, devotion to the pursuit of innovative technologies in watch-making and cultivating the potential of his employees.

The highly unique corporate philanthropy programs of the Rolex Institute include the Rolex Awards program that recognizes individuals for achievements in the fields of science, technology, environmental preservation and preservation of cultural heritage, and the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative that seeks to help young artists in the fields of dance, literature, film, theatre, visual arts and music to reach their full potential. An office has been established to administer each of the Institute’s programs and be responsible for the extensive process of selecting candidates for the awards or support programs and making the final award decisions based on the opinions of advisory panels made up of experts in the respective fields. These efforts to find new talent from a variety of perspectives that transcend genre, culture and generation.
+Main Support Programs
The Rolex Awards for Enterprise
The Rolex Awards for Enterprise were established in 1976 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Rolex Oyster, the world’s first completely waterproof watch, with the aim of fostering a spirit of individual enterprise around the world by supporting individuals involved in current projects in the fields of science, technology, exploration, the environment and cultural heritage. Unlike other programs that reward past achievements, Rolex accepts applications every two years and selects five laureates and five associate laureates as recipients of generous support in their efforts to expand knowledge in new areas and improve life on our planet.

The Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative
The Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative was created in 2002 to perpetuate the world’s artistic heritage in dance, literature, film, theatre, visual arts and music by helping promising artists to achieve their full potential. Every two years, six emerging artists (protégé) are selected to receive the rare opportunity to develop their artistic vision under the watchful eye of a recognized master (mentor) in their field by having them working together one-to-one over a period of one year. Through this unique relationship the young protégé is encouraged to give form to their artistic vision, while the mentors use their knowledge and experience to make an important contribution to the next generation. The mentors are chosen from among world-class active artists including such figures as William Forsythe, Pina Bausch, Tricia Brown and Saburo Teshigawara in dance, Robert Wilson in theater, and Toni Morrison and Ariel Dorfman in literature, among others. The following are the mentors and protégé chosen in 2006 and currently being supported by the program.
[Genre: Mentor and Protégé]
Theater: Julie Taymor (U.S.) and Selina Cartmell (UK)
Dance: Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker (Belgium) and Anani Dodji Sanouvi (Togo)
Music: Violinist, violist, conducter Pinchas Zukerman (U.S.) and David Aaron Carpenter (U.S.)
Literature: Tahar Ben Jelloun (France) and Edem (Turkey)
Visual Arts: John Baldessari (U.S.) and Alejandro Cesareo (Uruguay)
Film: Stephen Frears (UK) and Jousé Méndez (Peru)

The “Ashes and Snow” project
One of Rolex’s programs supporting an individual artists involves the Canadian artist Gregory Colbert and his master achievement Ashes and Snow – an installation of films and large-format photographs that are compelling meditations on man and animals encountered on more than 40 expeditions to India, Egypt, Namibia, Borneo and other locations around the globe over the past 15 years. Japanese architect Shigeru Ban designed The Nomadic Museum made entirely of shipping containers and other recycled or reusable materials to house the Ashes and Snow exhibition, ensuring that these can be seen by a worldwide audience by transporting them in container form. The Nomadic Museum debuted in New York in 2005 and subsequently opened in Santa Monica, California, and came to Tokyo, Japan in 2007. The exhibition will travel indefinitely to ports of call in all regions of the world with no final destination.

Rolex Education
Committed to perpetuating excellence in watchmaking, Rolex has founded Lititz Watch Technicum watchmaking schools in Switzerland, Japan and the United States. Another school was opened in 2006 in Mumbai, India. Limited to an enrollment of 12 apprentices per school each year, the concentrated two-year program produces watchmakers prepared to respond to the most demanding requirements of the industry.