Basel/Hamburg, The Baloise Art Prize has been awarded to Jenni Tischer from Germany and Kemang Wa Lehulere from South Africa. The two prizes of CHF 30,000.- each will be presented at the Statements sector of Art Basel by a jury of international experts. The prize includes the acquisition by Baloise of a group of works by the award winners, which are donated to two important museums in Europe: currently the Hamburger Kunsthalle and the MUMOK, Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig, Vienna.
This year’s jury includes: Manuel Borja-Villel, Director Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; Eric Decelle, Collection Eric Decelle, Brussels; Karola Kraus, Director, Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig, Vienna; Petra Roettig, Director, Galerie der Gegenwart, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg; and Martin Schwander, Fine Art Advisor of Baloise, Chairman of the jury.The jury characterizes the work of the award winners as follows:
Crucial to the design of the three-dimensional works created by Jenni Tischer is the combination of material, colour, form and text. The artist incorporates references to modernism into the context of her own works, while undermining them at the same time. Her installations resemble stage sets, in which a wealth of objects seem to be telling stories, an impression contradicted by the fact that they preclude interpretation. Political concerns such as authorship, production and feminism resonate in Tischer‘s works, specifically in her choice of technique. She often exploits typically feminine activities like embroidery, sewing or weaving, which she transports into the context of art with great subtlety.
*1979, Heidelberg, Germany, lives and works in Berlin, Germany
In his work Kemang Wa Lehulere explores questions of collective memory and seeks to uncover the traces of South African history. To this end, he not only uses the devices of revealing and writing down but also of wiping out text and pictures. His wall-sized drawings, installations, performances and photographs establish a link between the the trauma and myths of South Africa’s past and contemporary social issues. Lehulere‘s works may be read as an archive, which demonstrates the process of forgetting and, like a collage, simultaneously opens avenues to new narratives that encourage multiple interpretations.
*1984, Cape Town, South Africa, lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa