Friday 1 April 2011

4th MaxMara Art Prize shortlist announced

Last night the Whitechapel Art Gallery and MaxMara announced the names of the five artists who have been shortlisted for the fourth MaxMara Art Prize For Women and launched the exhibition of the most recent winner, Andrea Buttner:

Extract of work by MaxMara Art Prize winner Andrea Buttner, currently on
show at the Whitechapel Gallery.
From drawing and sculpture to filmmaking and performance the MaxMara Prize this year offers real diversity in practice whilst showcasing some of the best work by women artists in the UK today. The short-listed artists are Christina Mackie, Avis Newman, Emily Wardill, Spartacus Chetwynd and Laure Prouvost.  The Judging panel was chaired by Iwona Blazwick, Director of The Whitechapel Gallery and included Gilda Williams, critic and lecturer; Amanda Wilkinson, gallerist; Lisa Milroy, artist and Muriel Salem, collector.
The MaxMara Art Prize for Women is the only UK art prize for women and was set up to promote and nurture female artists based in the United Kingdom, enabling artists to develop their potential and providing an opportunity for them to produce new works of art.  The prize itself will result in a six month residency based in Italy and an exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery.

An Evening With Jabba the Hutt, by Spartacus Chetwynd
Spartacus Chetwynd  (b. 1973, London) studied Social Anthropology at UCL before completing a BA in Fine Art at the Slade and an MA in Painting at the RCA.  She works in both performance and painting. Her DIY performances re-enact iconic scenes from literature, cinema and art using handmade costumes, choreography and elaborate stage sets. She has performed at Frieze Art Fair, Art Basel, ICA and Tate Modern and has had solo shows in Milan, Dijon and Zurich.

Christina Mackie  (b.1956, Oxford) studied at Vancouver School of Art and Central St. Martins. Mackie makes sets of sculptures that interlock to form installations. She has had solos shows at the Henry Moore Institute and Tate Britain and will have an exhibition at Chisenhale Gallery in London in 2012. Her work has been included in the British Art Show and the Busan Biennial. In 2005 she was awarded the Becks Futures prize and in 2010 the Hamlyn Award for Artists.

Avis Newman (b. 1946, London) studied at The Central School of Art and Goldsmiths College. Her layered, minimal canvas works, objects and works on paper show a longstanding preoccupation with the fundamental language of marking and inscribing and the initial moment of tracing. She has work in various public collections including Tate, London and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.  Solo exhibitions include: Renaissance Society, University of Chicago, de Appel Foundation, Amsterdam. Camden Arts Centre, London, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney.

Laure Prouvost  (b. 1978, Croix-Lille, France ) lives and works in London. She graduated from Central Saint Martins and took part of the Lux Artist Associate Program. Her work includes painting, video, sound and site specific works.  She has exhibited at Tate Britain, ICA, Serpentine and BFI. She opens a solo show at MOT International in April 2011. She was awarded the 56th Oberhausen Short Film Principal Prize (2010), a FLAMIN award  (2011) and the EAST International Award (2009).

Game Keepers Without Game, by Emily Wardill

Emily Wardill  (b. 1977) is a London-based filmmaker and performance artist. She studied at Central Saint Martins College of Art and works predominantly in film and video.  She has exhibited widely in the UK and internationally with solo shows at the ICA, London and PS1 New York; screenings at the London Film Festival and performances at the Serpentine Gallery. In 2010 she won The Jarman Award and her work is currently on show in The British Art Show at the Hayward.
Each of the artists will now be asked to create a presentation on their plans. The winner will be announced in September 2011 and the project realised during a six-month residency in 2012.  The residency is divided into two locations - the American Academy, Rome and the Pistoletto Foundation, Biella. The resulting work will then be offered to the Maramotti Collection for acquisition, and an exhibition of the resulting work will take place at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in 2013.
The Maramotti family, owners of the MaxMara Fashion Group, are major contemporary art collectors. The MaxMara Art Prize for Women is the first time the fashion house has established an arts prize in the UK and reflects the company’s strong association with art and women.  The Max Mara Fashion Group was founded in 1951 by Achille Maramotti and is now run by the next generation. The company is one of the largest women’s prêt-à-porter (ready-to-wear) manufacturers in the world, with 2082 stores and 23 different brands sold in more than 90 different countries in the world. On 29th September 2007 the Collezione Maramotti opened to the public in Reggio Emilia, Italy. For further information, please visit The first winner of the Max Mara Art Prize for Women was Margaret Salmon, the second was Hannah Rickards and the third Andrea Büttner, whose show is currently on at The Whitechapel. For more details click here.
Iwona Blazwick OBE, Director, Whitechapel Gallery said, “The Whitechapel Gallery has a long tradition of premiering female artists and the Max Mara Art Prize is close to our heart as it champions and supports female artists.  The short-listed artists for the next award offer a snapshot of the sheer calibre of art being made by women in Britain today.  The judges very much hope to bring these artists and their work to even wider attention.  For the winner the judges are looking for something exceptional and an artistic practice that is truly fascinating, and look forward to being able to give the winner of the Max Mara Art Prize the gift of time to develop new works of art.”

For more details visit The Whitechapel Gallery website.