Teresa Margolles Photo Credit: Wales News Picture
The 2012 shortlisted artists include: Miriam Bäckström (Sweden), Tania Bruguera (Cuba), Phil Collins (England), Sheela Gowda (India), Teresa Margolles (Mexico), Darius Mikšys (Lithuania) and Apolonija Šušterši? (Slovenia).
The winner of the Artes Mundi 5 prize was announced in an evening ceremony at National Museum Cardiff. From a shortlist of 7, Teresa Margolles was chosen as the winner of the prize by a panel of international curators and directors. With a first prize of £40,000, Artes Mundi is the largest cash prize awarded for the arts in the UK and one of the most significant in the world. The exhibition, which opened in October has already had 30,000 visitors .
The Panel of judges, chaired by curator and broadcaster Tim Marlow, commended the work of all seven nominated artists, but were particularly struck by “the visceral power and urgency as well as the sophistication of her work in confronting an on-going human tragedy”.
Teresa Margolles’ work focuses on Northern Mexican social experience where drug-related crime has resulted in widespread violence and murder. Since graduating with a diploma in forensic medicine, Margolles has examined the economics of death and her sculptural interventions and performances often bring the physical reality and materiality of death to the fore, exemplified in her artistic intervention during the 2009 Venice Biennale in which the floor of the Mexican pavilion was mopped with water used to wash dead bodies from a morgue in Mexico.
Teresa Margolles 32 anos Levantamiento y traslado donde cayo el cuerpo asesinado del artista Luis Miguel Suro, 2006 20 x 200 x 200cm Concrete and ceramic Courtesy the artist and Galerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich
Photo Credit: Wales News Picture
Teresa Margolles Sonido de la primera incision toracica durante la autopsia a un avictima de asesinato (Sonidos de la Morgue), 2006 66 min Audio Courtesy the artist and Galerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich Photo Credit: Wales News Picture
In both works chosen for Artes Mundi, death is a major theme. In Plancha, water which has been used to cleanse dead bodies in a morgue drips from the ceiling onto hotplates. Each drop evaporates on impact with a noticeable hiss. The work seeks to narrate the transition in death from present to absent, the processes of decomposition and ultimately honours anonymous lives that have been lost. 32 años Levantamiento y traslado donde cayo el cuerpo asesinado del artista Luis Miguel Suro for which Margolles has chosen to transport and exhibit the tiles from the floor on which Luis Miguel Suro, a close friend and a promising young artist, was murdered in Guadalajara, Mexico. The displacement of these tiles brings the crime and violence associated with them inside the museum itself.
The international judging panel comprises Ute Meta Bauer. Dean of Fine Art, Royal College of Art, London, Adam Budak, International Curator for Contemporary Art, Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, Kathrin Becker, Head of Video Forum , nbk, Berlin, Karen MacKinnon, Curator, Glyn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea, Tim Marlow, Exhibitions Director, White Cube, London, Sabine Schaschl. Director, Kunsthaus Baselland, Basel .
In association with Artes Mundi, the Derek Williams Trust Purchase Award of £30,000, to acquire a work by one of the shortlisted artists for Amgueddfa Cymru-National Museum Wales contemporary art collection, will go to Tania Bruguera for Displacement, 1998-99.
Howard Evans, Executive Trustee from Derek Williams Trust said
“The Trust is delighted to support the Museum and its partnership with Artes Mundi by funding the Derek Williams PurchasePrizeAward. Our long-term supportof this initiativehas been of real importanceto the Museum and its development of an ambitious collection of international contemporary art. The Award ensures that the very best international art will be seen here in Wales in the years to come.”
About Artes Mundi:
Artes Mundi is an international arts organisation based in Cardiff, Wales. Established in 2002, Artes Mundi is committed to supporting groundbreaking contemporary visual artists from around the world whose work engages with social reality and lived experience.