BC21 Art Award

The BC21 Boston Consulting & Belvedere Contemporary Art Award, an initiative of the Boston Consulting Group Vienna, is organized in cooperation with the Belvedere.

Offering a prize money of 20.000 Euros, the BC21 Art Award carries the highest value among prizes for contemporary art donated by the private sector in Austria. The BC21 Art Award was launched on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Boston Consulting Group in Austria.
The prize is meant to promote innovative young artists and is awarded every second year. Eligible artists must be under 40 years old and must have been born in Austria or living in the country for at least five years. The members of this year’s preliminary jury have nominated one artist each.
The award winner will subsequently be chosen by a selection committee.

2015

Winner

Nilbar Güreş

Nominee

Sarah Pichlkostner
Hannes Zebedin
Andreas Duscha
Nilbar Güreş

Nomination Jury

Cathérine Hug (Kuratorin, Kunsthaus Zürich), Sophie Goltz (Stadtkuratorin Hamburg), Joshua Simon (Direktor MoBY – Museums of Bat Yam, Tel Aviv) und Francesco Stocchi (Kurator, Bojmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam)

Selection Jury

Vasif Kortun (Direktor SALT, Istanbul), João Ribas (Kurator, Serralves Museum, Porto), Polly Staple (Direktorin Chisenhale Gallery, London) und Agnes Husslein-Arco (Direktorin Belvedere und 21er Haus)

Jury-Statement

„The jury finds the diversity of artists’ positions compelling which combined with the excellent presentation of the works made the deliberation on the finalist both very interesting and difficult. Notable for its idiosyncratic approach to a variety of media Nilbar Güres’ work distinguishes itself for its engagement with both the humour and politics of identity, sex, and gender. The artist’s collages, photographs, drawings, and objects reveal a playful intelligence with which she confronts normative conventions and stereotypical representations to great effect.“

2013

Winner

Anna Witt

Nominee

Marlene Haring
Ralo Mayer
Christoph Meier
Anna Witt

Nomination Jury

Diana Baldon, Head of the Non-Profit-Exhibition rooms Index in Stockholm and long-standing Lecturer at the Akademie der bildenden Künste Wien, voted for Anna Witt; Krist Gruijthuijsen, Director of the Grazer Kunstverein, nominated Christoph Meier; Vít Havránek, Head of the Prague Dependance of the international art network tranzit.org, choose Marlene Haring; Sabine Schaschl, Head of Konstruktiv in Zürich, voted for Ralo Mayer.

Selection Jury

Agnes Husslein-Arco, Director Belvedere and 21er Haus, Giovanni Carmine, Director Kunst Halle Sankt Gallen in Switzerland, Maria Hlavajova BAK – basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez, Chief Editor Manifesta Journal, Paris/Amsterdam, and Grant Watson, Curator at Iniva – Institute of International Visual Arts in London

Jury-Statement

„As a jury we would like first of all to thank the artists for their ambitious, thought provoking and inspiring works. From the exhibition it is clear to see how each of them is engaged in issues and questions that impact on contemporary society in important ways, but also how these works draw on the traditions and methods of recent art history. Because of the high standard of each contribution it was hard to choose a single winner, but after much deliberation, we unanimously decided to give the award to Anna Witt.
 
As a jury we found her to be one of the rare examples of an artist able to bring together conceptual enquiry with empathy for the people who contribute to her works, and articulate this through a precise formal language. Her practice appears to be motivated by a genuine curiosity about how individuals think and experience the world in relation to social situations and political questions. And it might be said that this curiosity also extends to the viewer. Through her performative video installations that build on collaborations with individuals and groups, it is possible to see how Witt gives agency to participants – suggesting the role of the active citizen and channeling words and ideas into a shared public space for discussion. Working from a tradition of politicized art, she engages with a variety of itineraries from this field but rearticulates them for the needs of a contemporary situation, as well as the needs of her own practice. Despite her conceptual and political focus, the artist nevertheless understands and utilizes the power of the visual, and is able to create spatial situations, which fully engage the viewer’s attention. We were impressed by the quality of the exhibition and the great work done by curator Luisa Ziaja who has made a real effort to realize each artist’s work in the show to its full potential and bring them together in a coherent and engaging whole. Last but not least as curators coming from a variety of different contexts, we would like to mention how impressed we are by this example of patronage, and hope that despite the current times, that this will not only continue but grow.“