Spirit Now London and The Hepworth Wakefield announce winners of the Spirit Now London Acquisition Prize in partnership with Frieze London
12 Oct 2023
The Hepworth Wakefield and Spirit Now London is delighted to announce the winners of the second edition of the Spirit Now London Acquisition Prize in partnership with Frieze London. This year’s edition paid particular attention to female artists under the age of 40 presented at Frieze London.
The 2023 Prize is attributed to the artists Bronwyn Katz for a large-scale installation (6 meters) and Rene Matić for two photos. The three works have been acquired for The Hepworth Wakefield. Thanks to the donation, they will join the permanent collection.
The jury headed by Marie-Laure de Clermont Tonnerre and composed of 17 members of the Spirit Now London Community and the leadership team of The Hepworth Wakefield including Simon Wallis, Director, Olivia Colling, Deputy Director and Laura Smith, Director of Collection & Exhibitions, visited the booths early morning of the opening day 11th October and deliberated early afternoon. The Spirit of giving committee focuses on helping museums acquire more works of female artists. 53 female artists (including non-binary) below 40 were proposed for the Prize this year.
“Art has the power to transform, inspire, and provoke conversations. We believe in nurturing the talents of emerging artists, especially women, and providing them with the recognition and support they deserve”. – Marie-Laure de Clermont- Tonnerre, founder and director, Spirit Now London.
“The Hepworth Wakefield is thrilled to be the beneficiary of this year’s Spirit Now London Acquisition Prize. We look forward to the collaboration with the Spirit Now London community and are enormously grateful for their generosity in enabling us to further our commitment to diversifying Wakefield’s permanent art collection and championing the work of women artists at a formative stage in their career.” – Laura Smith, Director of Collection & Exhibitions, The Hepworth Wakefield.
Katz was born in 1993 in Kimberley, South Africa. She lives and works between Cape Town and Johannesburg. Incorporating sculpture, installation, video and performance, Katz’s practice engages with the concept of land as a repository of memory and trauma, reflecting on the notion of place or space as lived experience, and the ability of the land to remember and communicate the memory of its occupation. Working with found natural materials such as iron ore, or used man-made objects such as foam mattress and bed springs, Katz’s approach to making is driven by storytelling and intuition. Conceptually, her sculptures refer to the political context of their making, embodying subtle acts of resistance that draw attention to the social constructions and boundaries that continue to define our environments. For Katz, the language of abstraction is in active opposition to overt representation, allowing her work to be open to multivalent readings. Hers is a minimalism that converses with early forms of abstract art; methods and traditions of mark-making and storytelling that long predate western modernism.
Rene Matić (b. 1997, Peterborough, UK) is a London-based artist and writer whose practice spans across photography, film, and sculpture, converging in a meeting place they describe as “rude(ness)” – an evidencing and honouring of the in-between. Matić draws inspiration from dance and music movements such as Northern soul, Ska, and 2-Tone as a tool to delve into the complex relationship between West Indian and white working-class culture in Britain, whilst privileging queer/ing intimacies, partnerships and pleasure as modes of survival.
Matić’s works are in several prominent collections including Tate, London (UK); Foundation Louis Vuitton, Paris (FR); UK Government Art Collection, London (UK); Arts Council Collection, London (UK); South London Gallery, London (UK); Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool (UK); Martin Parr Foundation, Bristol (UK); University Arts London Collection, London (UK)