23rd Baloise Art Prize awarded at Art Basel 2022

June 14, 2022
The Baloise Art Prize has been awarded to Tourmaline and Helena Uambembe. The prize of CHF 30,000.- will be presented at the Statements sector of Art Basel by a jury of international experts. The prize includes the acquisition by Baloise of works by the award winners, which are donated to two important museums in Europe: the MMK Frankfurt and the MUDAM, Luxembourg.

This year’s jury includes: Karola Kraus, General Director MUMOK Vienna, Chair of the Jury; Marie-Noëlle Farcy, Curator/Head of Collection, MUDAM, Luxembourg; Susanne Pfeffer, Director MMK, Frankfurt; Susanne von Meiss, von Meiss Collection, Zurich and Nina Zimmer, Director Kunstmuseum Bern / Zentrum Paul Klee.

Helena Uambembe

The stand is divided into two rooms, a living room and another that resembles a TV room. The former replicates the living room of the artist’s parents and contains such objects as vases and teacups as well as prints of pictures from her personal archives. By means of objects, installations, paintings, prints and performances, the Angolan artist reconstructs memories of her childhood in Pomfret, South Africa. She shows the extent to which history and personal experience are not only inscribed in objects and materials, but how these can also be drained and detached from their original context. 

Find out more in the interview with Helena Uambembe.

Portrait Helena Uambembe

Helena Uambembe, *1994, lives in South Africa, Jahmek Contemporary Art, Luanda, Angola

Still Helena Uambembe

Winning Art Work

Tourmaline

In her recent work Pollinator, the artist, film maker, writer and activist proposes an unconventional, poetic and personal portrait of Black, queer and trans communities. The heart of the film consists of a black-and-white aerial travelling shot that follows the artist from an Edwardian period room at the Brooklyn Museum to the nearby botanical garden. Wearing a sophisticated, simultaneously concealing and revealing outfit, she interacts intensely with a luxurious natural environment, expanding the idea of a garden into a site of pleasure. Incorporating original personal footage, clips from her recent simulated flight as well as found footage, she also pays vibrant tribute to Marsha P. Johnson, an inspirational figure of the New York queer scene from the late 1960s. 

Find out more in the interview with Tourmaline.

Portrait Tourmaline

Tourmaline,*1983, lives in New York, USA, Chapter NY, New York, USA

Still Tourmaline

Winning Art Work