Meet five of our talented Main and Emerging Aeshetica Art Prize winners. These artists use video to hold up a mirror to the world around us – asking key questions about international politics, race, religion and representation.
2019 Main Prize-winner Jenn Nkiru’s Rebirth is Necessary is a personal and powerful exploration of blackness. The film pieces together dreamlike portraits with stunning archival footage that includes Afrofuturism pioneer Sun Ra and revolutionary organisation the Black Panther Party. The filmmaker has been shortlisted for the 2020 Film London Jarman Award.
2019 Emerging Prize-winner Maryam Tafakory explores the contradictory images of women and their portrayal through religion. Bringing together fragments of Forugh Farrokhzad’s poem Sin, Tafakory’s I Have Sinned A Rapturous Sin is set against clerics instructing women to suppress their sexual desires.
Celebration is protest at Leeds West Indian Carnival. A look at forms of authority, Rhea Storr’s 2020 Main Prize-winning film A Protest, A Celebration, A Mixed Message asks who is really performing. Following Mama Dread’s, a troupe whose carnival theme is Caribbean immigration to the UK, we are asked to consider the visibility of black bodies.
Chris Yuan, 2020 Emerging Prize- winner, uses video, fiction, sound, design and performance to look at human construction. Counterfictions uses Donald Trump as a starting point as he builds a fictional wall in the public imagination. The film weaves together scientific facts, quotes from the president, references to literature and mythology.
Inspired by painting and the visual power of cinema, 2018 Emerging Prize-winner Electra Lyhne-Gold stages herself in surreal, fictional narratives, inhabiting invented personas or characters. In Lost In Translation, the artist explores the language of advertising, working behind and in front of the camera.
The Aesthetica Art Prize is open for entries until 31 August. Find out more and submit here.