This year, the Kunststiftung NRW is presenting its international media art prize – the Nam June Paik Award – for the ninth time. The Nam June Paik Award specifically honours artists that push boundaries, bridge cultural divides and are transdisciplinary in approach, very much in the spirit of Nam June Paik's pioneering practice. Staged every two years, the competition takes place in conjunction with a designated art institution in North Rhine-Westphalia. As the first Kunstverein in the award’s history, the Westfälischer Kunstverein has been selected as project partner and will host the exhibition featuring the five nominated artists.
The nominees have been selected by a panel of experts comprising Kristina Scepanski, Director of the Westfälischer Kunstverein, Hanne Mugaas, Director of the Kunsthall Stavanger in Norway and Anne-Claire Schmitz, founding director of La Loge in Brussels.
The nominees are
Andreas Angelidakis (b. 1968, GR, lives in Athens)
Melanie Bonajo (b. 1978, NL, lives in Amsterdam)
Antoine Catala (b. 1975, F, lives in New York)
Hanne Lippard (b. 1984, GB, lives in Berlin)
Sondra Perry (b. 1986, US, lives in New York)
Andreas Angelidakis undertakes a kind of media archaeology in his works when he posits an analogy between the classical philosopher Diogenes and ancient vessels emblazoned with drawings and stories on the one hand, and our use of media today on the other. In her video installations, Melanie Bonajo counters our high-tech world with nature and its potential – at times it concerns existential experience, at others the man/machine interface. Antoine Catala's kinetic and pneumatic objects utilise precisely this innovative technology in order to focus thematically upon fundamental human feelings. Hanne Lippard stages highly nuanced and precise voice-based performances and installations that communicate through sound and the spoken word taken from her elegant, poetic texts. Sondra Perry produces videos and video sculptures that frequently demand physical activity on the part of the viewer and thus channel the focus upon the body once more, its potential and its shortcomings, whereby paradoxically this very body would seem to have become almost superfluous in our increasingly digital world.
Sondra Perry was awarded winner of the Nam June Paik Award 2018.
The award includes prize money of 25,000 Euro and was awarded on 9 November 2018 on site in Münster by an international panel of judges comprising
Karen Archey, Curator of Contemporary Art and Time-based media, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam
Mark Beasley, Curator of Media and Performance, Hirshhorn Museum, Washington
Mélanie Bouteloup, Director Bétonsalon – Center for Art and Research, Paris
Katerina Gregos, Curator and writer, Brussels
and Krist Gruijthuijsen, Director, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin.