After winning the Hiroshima Art Prize in 2015, Mona Hatoum is now featured in a major solo show at the Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art.
Established in 1989 by the City of Hiroshima, the Hiroshima Art Prize is awarded every three years to an artist who contributes to world peace. The Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art is now presenting previous and new work of the Prize’s latest winner, Mona Hatoum, until 15 October 2017.
Established by the city of Hiroshima, the Hiroshima Art Prize honours the achievements of an artist who has contributed significantly to peace through their artwork. In doing so, the Prize hopes to promote art “to show the world the city’s spirit of heartfelt prayer for world peace and humanity’s well-being, and to make a positive contribution to humankind”.
Prizes are awarded to individuals across the arts, including those working in fine art, fashion or architecture. Past recipients have included fashion designer Issey Miyake (fashion, 1990), artist Robert Rauschenberg (fine art, 1993), architect Daniel Libeskind (architecture, 2001) and artist Yoko Ono (fine art, 2010).
Established in 1989 by the City of Hiroshima, site of the first atomic bombing in human history, the Hiroshima Art Prize aims to appeal to a wider world about the “Spirit of Hiroshima”, which seeks everlasting world peace through contemporary art. The prize is awarded once every three years, and this year the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art presents an exhibition by Mona Hatoum, winner of the 10th Hiroshima Art Prize in 2015.
The “10th Hiroshima Art Prize: Mona Hatoum” exhibition (from 29 July to 15 October 2017) is Hatoum’s first ever comprehensive solo show in Japan. It features important previous works alongside new works that the artist has created after visiting Hiroshima, infamously the site of the atomic bomb being dropped in 1945, therefore explicitly weaving the historical narrative of the city into her own practice. As the museum states,
With new works that make reference to Hiroshima, this exhibition promises to inspire further universal concern over one of the most tragic events in human history.
In a statement about why Mona Hatoum was selected as the prize winner, the Art Prize explain,
Ms. Mona Hatoum’s work deals with social contradictions and the suffering of alienated people or political oppression, based on her own complicated circumstances as a Palestinian exile. These creative endeavors greatly correspond with the aims of the Hiroshima Art Prize. Moreover, Ms. Hatoum was chosen due to our expectation that the commemorative exhibition will display new works that will squarely address and deeply engage with “Hiroshima” as a universal symbol.
Born in Beirut to an exiled Palestinian family in 1952, Mona Hatoum found herself based in London in the 1970s, after she was unable to return to Lebanon when the civil war broke out. Studying at Byam Shaw School of Art and then the Slade School of Art, she was shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 1995. One of Lebanon’s leading artists, Hatoum’s practice focuses on performance, video, installation and sculpture. Her work considers themes of social contradiction, political oppression and gender issues, based on her experiences of double exile as a Palestinian.
On winning the prize, Hatoum writes:
I hope audiences will engage with this (Hiroshima show) on different levels, wonder what it is about, and maybe find some answers for themselves, because works do not speak in direct terms and are open to several interpretations.
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- The Menace of Pure Form: Mona Hatoum at Tate Modern – June 2016 – Mona Hatoum’s Tate Modern retrospective charts a brilliant and ever-evolving oeuvre.
- In between truth and fiction: the art of Lebanon’s Walid Raad at MoMA New York – January 2016 – New York’s MoMA holds the first major American survey show of the influential Lebanese artist Walid Raad, focusing on two of his major projects to date
- Mona Hatoum at the Centre Pompidou – in pictures – June 2015 – the Centre Pompidou in Paris launches a major survey of Mona Hatoum’s 30-plus year-career
- 3 out of 5 Sharjah Biennial 10 prizes go to Asian visual artists – March 2011 – we highlight the three Asian visual artists that have been honoured in the Sharjah Biennial Prize for 2011
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