The Johannes Vermeer Award, state prize for the arts, was awarded for the first time in 2009 to Pierre Audi, opera director, and subsequently in 2010 to Alex van Warmerdam, director, and Erwin Olaf, photographer (see archive). In 2012 Marlene Dumas, visual artist, received the award. The award was instituted in 2008 by the then Minister of Education, Culture and Science, Ronald Plasterk (PvdA), in order to honour and encourage outstanding artistic talent. The award consists of a sum of 100,000 euros, mainly to be used for the realisation of a special project. The award is intended for artists working in the Netherlands and across all disciplines, ranging from dance to design, from fashion to music, from writing to painting.