Thursday, November 17, 2005

Artes Mundi Prize 2006 Shortlist

"CARDIFF, WALES.-Artes Mundi, Wales International Visual Art Prize, announced the eight artists who have been short-listed for the second Artes Mundi Prize. The artists selected by two international curators, Deepak Ananth, a Paris-based, Indian Art Historian and Curator of modern and contemporary art and Brazilian curator, critic and writer Ivo Mesquita - a leading figure in the Latin American visual art world includes artists who have showcased work at recent international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale, Documenta XI and the Sao Paolo Biennale. The eight artists are:

Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Thomas Demand, Maurßcio Dias & Walter Riedweg, Leandro Erlich, Subodh Gupta, Sue Williams and Wu Chi-Tsung.

Eija-Liisa Ahtila – was born and works in Helsinki, Finland. Ahtila describes her work as ‘human dramas’ taken from her own observations and experiences through the medium of film and video.

Thomas Demand – was born in Munich and now lives and works in Berlin. Demand’s work combines conceptualism and photography, using a process of construction, representation and repetition. He meticulously re-creates life-sized models of exteriors or interiors, photographing the construction before destroying it.

Maurßcio Dias & Walter Riedweg – The Brazilian artist Maurßcio Dias and Swiss artist Walter Riedweg have worked together since 1993. Their research and collaborations, most often presented in the form of video installations, explore the lives of groups of people who live on the borders of mainstream culture such as immigrants and prostitutes or literally on a border, such as the border police.

Leandro Erlich – was born and works in Buenos Aires, Argentina. His large scale sculptures and installations create a world of trickery and illusion; doors cannot be opened, peepholes reveal the unexpected and mirrors that do not reflect. Erlich challenges the viewers habitual idea of reality by creating an unexpected experience from a familiar environment. He is currently showing work at the 51st La Biennale Venezia.

Subodh Gupta – was born in Khagaul, India and now lives and works in New Delhi. Subodh Gupta works in a wide range of mediums from sculpture and painting to installation, photography, video and performance. He elevates the status of found objects from everyday items of rural India to artworks – cow dung, milk buckets, kitchen utensils, scooters, guns and gulal powder. He is currently showing work at the 51st La Biennale Venezia.

Sue Williams – was born in Cornwall and now lives and works in Wales. Her work is embodied in her passionate response to the human condition; a pre-occupation with the fantasies of feminism, sexuality and gender and the notion of desire - both sexual and cerebral.

Wu Chi-Tsung – was born in Taipei, Taiwan where he still works and lives. Awarded the Taipei Arts Award in 2003, Wu’s recent work explores the notion of “image” through various media such as video, photography, and mechanical installation.

In 2004 the Artes Mundi Prize was awarded for the first time to Chinese artist, Xu Bing. Artes Mundi, is an international biennial event that recognises some of today’s most exciting visual artists from around the world, and whose work explores the human form and human condition. It comprises a major exhibition, a public event programme, a prize of £40,000 to one artist and a purchase fund to enable works to be purchased for the National Collections.

The exhibition is exclusively on show at the National Museum & Gallery, Cardiff, Wales from 11th February to 7th May 2006. The prize will be awarded on, Friday, 31st March 2006."
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- Maybe it is true contemporary artists are only interested in working through their own ideas by their own direction. Does this individuality force artists to be dependent upon the generosity of prizes and foundations? What does that say for our INDEPENDENCE? - DN

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