Mumbai-based artist Nalini Malani awarded coveted 2019 Joan Miró Prize

Indian artist Nalini Malani has been chosen the winner of the seventh edition of one of the highly coveted art awards in the world — the Joan Miró Prize. The award comprises a cash prize of 70,000 euros ($77,000) along with a cover of the production cost of a solo exhibition of the work by the winning artist at Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona.

The Joan Miró Prize is awarded every two years by the Joan Miró Foundation and La Caixa Foundation, in recognition of present-day artistic works across the globe. The award was conferred to Malani at an award ceremony held in Barcelona, Spain on 23 May.

"Malani has built an impressive body of work that engages viewers through complex, immersive installations that present her vision of the battered world we live in. Her interest in ancient mythology, both Greek and Indian, as well as in modern symbols and image-making, has allowed her to develop a very personal, cosmopolitan iconographic mingling that boldly denounces contemporary violence and injustice, and their effects on planetary life," mentions Joan Miró Foundation in their press note, and adds, "The jury acknowledged her longstanding commitment to the silenced and the dispossessed all over the world, most particularly women, through a complex artistic quest based on immersive installations and a personal iconography where a profound knowledge of ancient mythologies converges with a bold condemnation of contemporary injustices."

Born in Karachi in 1946 and currently residing in Mumbai, Malani "places inherited iconographies and cherished cultural stereotypes under pressure. Her work is influenced by her experiences as a refugee of the Partition of India," her website reads. A pioneer in film, photography, installation, video art and performance in India, Malani studied fine arts at the JJ School of Art in Mumbai and then spent two years in Paris with a scholarship from the French government. In 2010, the San Francisco Art Institute granted her an honorary doctorate in fine arts and in 2013 she became the first Asian woman to receive the Arts & Culture Fukuoka Prize.

About her exhibition at the Fundació Joan Miró scheduled to be held in 2020,  Malani said, "I would like each space in the foundation to have a different piece," reports Indo-Asian News Service and that each of these pieces will be connected via illustrated murals that will serve as a thematic thread as if the whole exhibition were a novel written in chapters.

"If people experienced life with art under their skin then many of the world's problems would have solutions. Without art, there is boredom, and with boredom, violence," added Malani.

The jury panel for the 2019 Joan Miró Prize included Marko Daniel, Director of the Fundació Joan Miró; Nimfa Bisbe, Head of the La Caixa Foundation contemporary art collection; Iwona Blazwick, Director of the Whitechapel Gallery (London); Magnus af Petersens, Director of the Bonniers Konsthall (Stockholm); Alfred Pacquement, former Director of the Musée national d’art moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris) and João Ribas, Curator of the Portuguese pavilion at the 58th Venice Art Biennale 2019.

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Updated Date: May 24, 2019 16:32:08 IST