Promoting talent has a long tradition at the Baloise Group. For many years now, it has been offering training and further education programmes to help them embark on a sustainable career. This promotional concept also characterises its commitment to art.
The basis for this is its longstanding collecting activity. Corporate Collecting is a significant contribution to corporate culture. The aim is not primarily to increase value, but to integrate intellectual values as essential factors in Baloise's corporate culture. Baloise sees the privilege of owning art as being linked with the obligation to make it accessible to a broad public. Baloise also cultivates this attitude through its commitment to promoting modern art - through purchases for its own collection and with the Baloise Art Prize: Baloise promotes the artistic development of young and emerging talents.
Thanks to its reputation, the Baloise Art Prize has also become a stepping stone to a successful career. Many prizewinners can now count themselves among the most prominent figures on the international art scene.
20 years ago, two talented young artists were awarded the Baloise Art Prize for the first time. Since then, two artists have been honoured each year at Art Basel on the basis of their selection by an international jury of experts. They each receive 30,000 Swiss francs. In addition, the Baloise Group acquires works of art by the prizewinners and donates them to two major European museums; currently the MUDAM, Musée d'Art Moderne Grand Duc Jean, Luxembourg and the Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin.
In 2019 the jury has chosen the italian artist Giulia Cenci and the chinese artist Xinyi Cheng. The installation vo Giulia Cenci is currently shown at MUDAM Luxemburg. The Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin, currently exhibits in a solo show works by Xinyi Cheng. Both donation events had to be postponed due to the pandemic situation.
Xinyi Cheng tackles the genre of portraiture and imbues it with psychology, social relations, and personal fascination. As a female painter mainly choosing male models, she subverts the archetypal relation that has prevailed in this genre for centuries. The portraits are painted in undefined settings and range from classic compositions to extreme close-ups. The pictorial treatment varies from flat to detailed, from thin to thick, and from realistic to symbolic. Depicted in unrealistic but expressive colors, always mastered as an attractive combination and palette, the subjects of Xinyi Cheng's works are as much represented as they are fantasized.
Have a look at the exhibition by Xinyi Cheng @ Hamburger Bahnhof:
Gallery: Balice Hertling, Paris, France
Jury members Baloise Art Prize 2019:
Marie-Noëlle Farcy, Curator/Head of Collection, MUDAM, Luxembourg; Gabriele Knapstein, Head of Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin; Harald Falckenberg, Sammlung Falckenberg, Hamburg; Lionel Bovier, Director Musée d'art moderne et contemporain (MAMCO), Geneva and Martin Schwander, Fine Art Advisor of Baloise, Chairman of the jury.