Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation and SAM Announce Winners of the APB Foundation Signature Art Prize 2011Nov 28, 2011 18:00 SGT
The Singapore Art Museum (SAM) and Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) Foundation are proud to announce that artist Rodel Tapaya from the Philippines has been awarded the Grand Prize (SGD 45,000) of the APB Foundation Signature Art Prize 2011, for his winning artwork Baston ni Kabunian, Bilang Pero di Mabilang (Cane of Kabunian, numbered but cannot be counted).
His winning artwork employs imagery from Filipino folklore juxtaposed with elements of modern day Philippines, commenting on pre-colonial myths, stories and cultural heritage while also commenting on current issues such as environmental destruction.
The APB Foundation Signature Art Prize recognises artists for outstanding artwork created in the preceding three years and encourages the development of contemporary art across the Asia Pacific region.
On winning the award, Tapaya said, “I am extremely happy to have received the Grand Prize of the Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Signature Art Prize. It's a very prestigious award and I'm honoured to have been nominated alongside 14 other very talented finalists and to be chosen as the winner by such a distinguished and well-respected panel of judges. This award will no doubt be a boost to my practice and is a great encouragement for me to continue producing good work.”
Tapaya's artwork was selected as the winning entry from 15 artworks shortlisted from the 130 nominations received from 24 countries and territories across Asia Pacific. The winning entry was assessed by the international jury panel based on the following criteria: strength of the idea and concept, creative and interesting use of medium and material, technique, expression and form, artistic insight and interpretation, imagination and originality and actual installed artwork. The other shortlisted artists are from Australia, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam.
Four other artists were also presented awards. Three Jurors' Choice Awards, each worth SGD 10,000, went to Daniel Crooks from Australia for Static No.12 (seek stillness in movement), Sheba Chhachhi from India for The Water Diviner, and Aida Makoto from Japan for Ash Color Mountains. The People's Choice Award (worth SGD 10,000) for the most number of public votes received from around the world went to Michael Lee from Singapore for his artwork Second-Hand City.
The Grand Prize was presented by Ms Grace Fu, Senior Minister of State for Information, Communications and the Arts, and Environment and Water Resources at the awards ceremony at the Singapore Art Museum last evening. Mr Roland Pirmez, Chairman, Advisory Committee and Member, Board of Trustees of the APB Foundation presented the Juror's Choice Awards while Mr Michael Koh, CEO of the National Heritage Board presented the People's Choice Award.
The jury panel was made up of five eminent art experts: Mr. Fumio Nanjo, Director, Mori Art Museum; Mr. Gregor Muir, Executive Director, Institute of Contemporary Arts London; Mr. Hendro Wijanto, leading Southeast Asian writer, critic and curator; Mr. Ranjit Hoskote, poet, curator and theorist, and Mr. Tan Boon Hui, Director, SAM.
According to a statement from the jury panel, “Rodel Tapaya's Baston ni Kabunian, Bilang Pero di Mabilang (Cane of Kabunian, numbered but cannot be counted) is a compelling and monumental-scale work. With its multiple narratives and diverse allegorical references, this stunning mural-sized painting embodies a vibrant strain in contemporary art from the Asia-Pacific region. While Tapaya does not shy away from drawing on the folklore of his native region, his is neither a naïve nor self-exoticising practice. The artist is audacious in his use of the Philippine mural tradition as well as Latin American magic realism and Bosch-like phantasmagoria. Anchored in a postcolonial setting but with far-reaching universal relevance, the work will surely provoke discussion about emerging aesthetic tendencies in Asia-Pacific. Together with the three Jurors' Choice Award winners, the prize-winning works are ground-breaking in their negotiation of cultural heritage and contemporary forms of expression. They are all worthy of recognition as being among the best art works from the region.”
The triennial APB Foundation Signature Art Prize is a hallmark of distinction awarded to artists whose artworks represent a significant development in contemporary visual art in the Asia Pacific region. The award series is the result of a 15-year partnership announced in October 2007 between SAM and APB Foundation to develop and promote contemporary visual art in the Asia Pacific region. APB Foundation doubled its Prize funding this year from $2.25 million for five editions to $4.45 million and expanded the Prize to include nominations from the whole Asia Pacific region.
Says Mr Roland Pirmez, Chairman, Advisory Committee and Member, Board of Trustees of the APB Foundation, “As APB has marked its footprint in the Asia Pacific region, it only makes sense for the eponymous Foundation to celebrate the cultures amongst which it has situated its breweries. And what better way of capturing the essence and colour of the lives in the region than through the art of the people which speak so vividly of what is happening around them. The APB Foundation Signature Art Prize is set up to applaud and celebrate the diversity of life as showcased in the artwork of the Asia Pacific region. We are extremely excited, proud and honoured to be part of this celebration.”
Mr. Tan Boon Hui, Director of the Singapore Art Museum added, “The Singapore Art Museum is proud to have presented this Prize once again. We believe in the value and originality of the contemporary art that is being created now in the Asia Pacific, as it connects us to the living communities around us. The expansion of the Signature Art Prize has allowed us to offer a critical platform for even more artists to present their works while inviting new and existing audiences to encounter the richness of this region's art. The nominated and finalist artworks collectively form a barometer for assessing the state of contemporary art-making in the region, all in one place. We thank APB Foundation for its foresight and generous sponsorship and also thank all nominated artists, nominators and the judges for making this Prize a success. Our heartiest congratulations to all winners of the Prize.”
The 15 shortlisted artworks can be viewed at the Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Signature Art Prize 2011 Finalists Exhibition from now until 4 March 2012 at the Singapore Art Museum. A series of tours, talks on contemporary art and other outreach activities held in conjunction with the exhibition have also been planned to give the public more insight into each of the finalist works. Details can be found on www.singaporeartmuseum.sg/signatureartprize.