Winner or The Vincent van Gogh Biennial Award for Contemporary Art in Europe
The German painter Neo Rauch
(Leipzig, 1960), winner of the second
edition of The Vincent van Gogh
Biennial Award for Contemporary Art in
Europe, will receive the prize on 1 June
2002. The chairman of the jury, Harald
Szeemann, will personally present the
prize, worth EUR 50,000, at a
ceremony to be held in Maastricht.
Neo Rauch, who lives and works in Leipzig, is considered one of todayÃ¯Â¿Â½s leading European painters. His work is rooted in the German Realist painting tradition. In spite of the typically bleached, chalk-like colours he uses and the sparse way in which he uses them, his paintings have great eloquence. RauchÃ¯Â¿Â½s work is at once animated and serene, evocative of solidified fragments just before something big is set to happen. The atmosphere of his paintings, in which archetypal human figures in everyday scenes and desolate utopian backdrops or industrial locations take up pre-eminent positions, is suffused with a sense of hallucination. In these days of photography and video, Rauch has remained true to painting, his medium.
The jury of THE VINCENT 2002 consists of chairman Harald Szeemann, who has organised several exhibitions, including the Venice Biennale in 1999 and 2001, Zdenka Badovinac, director and curator of the museum of modern art in Ljubljana, and Rosa Martinez, independent curator from Barcelona, who has also organised various exhibitions, including the Biennales of SÃ¯Â¿Â½o Paulo and Santa Fe. Other members of the jury are Eija-Liisa Ahtila, the Finnish artist and winner of THE VINCENT 2000 and Alexander van Grevenstein, director of the Bonnefanten Museum. At a meeting held in September 2001 in Maastricht, the jury unanimously recommended Neo Rauch as prize winner.
The prize-giving ceremony of THE VINCENT will take place in the Maastricht City Hall at 6:00 p.m. on 1 June. As well as presenting the prize to Neo Rauch, Harald Szeemann will submit the jury report and give a lecture entitled Ã¯Â¿Â½State of the ArtsÃ¯Â¿Â½. On Sunday 2 June, Szeemann will also officially open the exhibition to the public. Forty paintings by NEO RAUCH will be on display at the Bonnefanten Museum until 6 October 2002.
THE VINCENT is organised by the Bonnefanten Museum in Maastricht and was initiated by The Broere Charitable Foundation. The prize was set up in memory of Monique Zajfen, a patron of the arts. THE VINCENT is also supported by the Province of Limburg and the municipality of Maastricht to commemorate the 1992 European Treaty of Maastricht. The exhibition is sponsored in part by the EuMan Group. Under the chairmanship of Sir Nicolas Serota (GB), THE VINCENT 2000 was awarded to the Finnish video artist Eija-Liisa Ahtila.
The collection of contemporary art has only recently been assembled and contains works by an international group of artists. It consists of a Seminal Collection dominated by prominent artists from the Minimal Art and Arte Povera movements. Important works by Marcel Broodthaers, Luciano Fabro, Sol LeWitt, Bruce Nauman, Robert Ryman, Richard Serra and others provide a solid basis for the young collection. These works also offer a frame of reference for new generations of artists who now also occupy key positions in the art world. The museum focuses on individual artists (and less on movements) and has thus far acquired multiple works by RenÃ¯Â¿Â½ DaniÃ¯Â¿Â½ls, Fons Haagmans, Imi Knoebel, Gary Hume, Marien Schouten, Luc Tuymans, Franz West and others. Recent acquisitions include works by Roman Signer, Thomas Hirschhorn and Suchan Kinoshita. In future, the museum intends to emphasise the most recent developments in art.
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