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HOME > Work of Art: The Next Great Artist > Work of Art (Season 1)

Bravo developing Sarah Jessica Parker's 'Runway'-like artists show

By Christopher Rocchio and Steve Rogers, 07/21/2008 

It looks like Sarah Jessica Parker's new reality series has found a home.

Bravo has announced it's developing American Artist, the working title of a new reality competition series for aspiring artists that is produced by the Sex and the City star and her Pretty Matches production company.  Parker has been developing the project with Project Runway's Magical Elves production company and former Miramax Television executive Eli Holzman.

Each episode of American Artist will follow contestants as they compete in art-themed challenges -- such as painting and photography or sculpting and industrial design -- that are designed to stretch their preferred mediums.

The contestants' creations will then be rated by a judging panel that will consist of fellow artists, gallerists, collectors, curators and critics.   American Artist's grand-prize winner will receive a gallery show, a cash prize and a sponsored nation-wide museum tour.

Magical Elves co-founders Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz had first revealed they were working on the project with Parker back in January.

According to Cutforth, he and Lipsitz originally began developing the concept with and Holzman, who previously helped develop Project Runway, and later combined their format with a similar concept being developed by Parker and her partner Alison Benson.

Bravo's decision to develop American Artist shouldn't come as a surprise considering Magical Elves' relationship with the cable network.

Magical Elves has produced all of Project Runway's Bravo editions for The Weinstein Company, the company that controls the show's rights.  However after The Weinstein Company announced that they had signed a new five-year deal to have Lifetime air Project Runway beginning with its sixth season, Cutforth and Lipsitz revealed they had decided not follow the show to the new cable network.

Cutforth and Lipsitz's decision to leave Project Runway was revealed on the same day that Bravo's NBC Universal parent also announced that it had signed Magical Elves to an exclusive first look development deal, however the pair have stated the two decisions were made independent of each other. 

Magical Elves will continue to produce Top Chef and Top Design for Bravo after Project Runway's departure.

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