Detail from Forty Pages No 4 (digital print) by Nasim Nasr. Photo courtesy of Nasim Nasr/Sovereign Art Foundation
Detail from Forty Pages No 4 (digital print) by Nasim Nasr. Photo courtesy of Nasim Nasr/Sovereign Art Foundation

Sovereign Asian Art Prize shortlist announced

Art lovers urged to vote for their favorite work in one of the region's most sought-after honours

April 8, 2017 10:00 AM (UTC+8)

The 30 finalists for this year’s Sovereign Asian Art Prize have been revealed with organizers saying they represent “cutting edge contemporary art practice” from the region.

Existing in Costume – Crime of Flying in the Sky with Broomstick (digital print) by Chan-Hyo Bae. Photo courtesy of Boo Sze Yang/Sovereign Art Foundation
Existing in Costume – Crime of Flying in the Sky with Broomstick (digital print) by Chan-Hyo Bae. Photo courtesy of Boo Sze Yang/Sovereign Art Foundation

The 13th edition of the prize – promoted as the region’s most prestigious – saw more than 300 mid-career artists nominated and more than 530 pieces of art entered into competition. The decision on the final field of 30 came down to a judging panel of 66 art specialists that included “art critics, lecturers and independent curators who work closely with artists in their respective regions.”

Intra-Asia (graphite and acrylic wash on watercolour board) by Saba Qizilbash. Photo courtesy of Saba Qizilbash/Sovereingn Art Foundation
Intra-Asia (graphite and acrylic wash on watercolour board) by Saba Qizilbash. Photo courtesy of Saba Qizilbash/Sovereign Art Foundation

“This year’s shortlisted artworks span a variety of mediums and include a piece made from hand-carved jackfruit wood; a pair of intricately embroidered rugs, a steel cabinet containing seven tiers of chromed found objects and a paper work crafted using holes from over one hundred and fifty thousand individual needle piercings,” organizers the Sovereign Art Foundation said in a statement.

Writer and curator David Elliott, who chaired this year’s judging panel, said the 30 finalists had been a “revelation.”

“Not only has the region been covered in a more comprehensive way than before, but also a new generation of artists is starting to emerge that is impressive in the range and density of its work. This is clearly shown in the finalists in this exhibition,” said Elliott.

The Gateway #3 (oil on linen) by Boo Sze Yang. Photo courtesy of Boo Sze Yang/Sovereign Art Foundation
The Gateway #3 (oil on linen) by Boo Sze Yang. Photo courtesy of Boo Sze Yang/Sovereign Art Foundation

The grand prize and public vote prize winners, who will be awarded US$30,000 and US$1,000 respectively, will be announced at the Sovereign Asian Art Prize gala dinner and auction on May 5. The public can vote for their favorite work on Sovereign’s website or Facebook page.

Vessel of Time (digital print) by Youki Hirakawa. Photo courtesy of Youki Hirakawa/Sovereign Art Foundation
Vessel of Time (digital print) by Youki Hirakawa. Photo courtesy of Youki Hirakawa/Sovereign Art Foundation

The 30 pieces will be exhibited at Christie’s Hong Kong showroom, The James Christie Room (22/F, Alexandra House, 18 Chater Road Central) from April 19-21, and then at The Rotunda, Exchange Square Hong Kong, from April 25-May 4. The cocktail opening at The Rotunda on April 25 from 6pm-9pm is open to the public (RSVPs to mary-jane@sovereignartfoundation.com).

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