NEWS  

THE 2019 PURVĪTIS PRIZE 0

Exhibition at the Latvian National Museum of Art features the work of the eight finalists 

Arterritory.com
22/03/2019

Today, March 22, the Great Hall of the Latvian National Museum of Art will see the opening of the exhibition featuring the eight finalists nominated for the 2019 Purvītis Prize, Latvia’s highest award in the visual arts; the exhibition will close on June 9. On view are works that were created and exhibited between 2017 and 2018, and which the professional group of experts on the nominating committee have deemed as being excellent achievements in the contemporary Latvian art scene.

Eight Latvian artists/artist groups have been shortlisted for the prestigious award. The winning artist/artist group will be announced at a special ceremony to be held on April 12 at the Zuzeum Art Centre.

The recipient of the award will be decided upon by an international Jury who will convene on the evening of April 11. The members of this year’s Jury are: Galila Barzilaï-Hollander (Belgium), art collector; Sergei Kharchaturov (Russia), art curator, theoretician and critic; Ursula Krinzinger (Austria), director and owner of Galerie Krinzinger; Imants Tillers (Australia), artist and theoretician; and Gregor Muir (UK), Director of Collection, International Art, at Tate.

THE FINALISTS

Ēriks Apaļais for the series of paintings titled Diaries from Earth, which were exhibited during the 1st Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art (RIBOCA) in the summer of 2018.


Ēriks Apaļais. Getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Latvian National Museum of Art Director Māra Lāce and Ēriks Apaļais. Getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare

Apaļais graduated from the University of Fine Arts of Hamburg (2011), where he studied under Professor Andreas Slominski and was awarded the Karl H. Ditze-Preis for his diploma work. Since 2013 he has been studying English philology at the University of Latvia. Ēriks Apaļais’ works deal with language as a culturally produced material; his work often refers to literature and linguistics. His black matte large-format paintings resemble chalk-boards where deconstructed elements float upon the surface like the remnants of memories that have become estranged from their meaning.

Ieva Epnere for her solo show Dzīvo atmiņu jūra/Sea of Living Memories at the kim? Contemporary Art Centre, at the end of 2016/beginning of 2017.


Ieva Epnere. Getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare

Epnere has an MA from the Department of Visual Communications at the Art Academy of Latvia, and graduated from the postgraduate course at the Higher Institute for Fine Arts in Ghent (2011–12). Her artistic practice includes photography, video and installation. Personal and intimate stories are the starting points for her artistic reflections on topics such as our collective past, identity, tradition, and ritual, often examining the remote Soviet history present in the nowadays reality.

Kristaps Epners for his series of works titled Forget Me Not, exhibited during the 1st Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art (RIBOCA) in the summer of 2018.


Kristaps Epners. Getting read for the exhibition. Photo: Martins Vizbulis


Photo: Martins Vizbulis


Photo: Martins Vizbulis

Epners received his MA in Visual Communication from the Art Academy of Latvia in 2003. He uses and mixes different kinds of media – photography, video, installation, sound, print, sculpture, etc. Wether encountered in real life or in documentary archives, his images possess a raw power that avoids ostentation.

Gints Gabrāns for the augmented reality project SAN, realised in 2017-2018.


Gints Gabrāns getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Gints Gabrāns getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Publicity photo

Gabrāns graduated from the Department of Stage Design at the Art Academy of Latvia in 1995, and is currently one of the most distinguished and visionary artists in Latvia. His artwork often enters the realms of science and new technologies and uses the power of evolution as an algorithm for creating artificial forms. Gabrāns’ field of artistic activities is broad and includes installations, art objects, video, painting, set design, and photography.

Romāns Korovins for his solo exhibition Satori of Master Wu and Master Lee at the creative workshop held at the ‘Arsenāls’ Exhibition Hall of the Latvian National Museum of Art.


Romāns Korovins. Getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Romāns Korovins getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Martins Vizbulis

Korovins has an MA from the Department of Graphic Art at the Art Academy of Latvia (1997). Since 1996 he has been working as a music and commercial video director. In his career as an artist, Korovins’ focus is on painting, photography, drawing, video, installation, and mixed media. His creative style is characterised by precise observations, visual paradoxes, and absurd logic.

Paulis Liepa for the solo exhibition The Cabinet of Beautiful Arts at the Mūkusala Art Salon.


Paulis Liepa. Getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Paulis Liepa getting ready for the exhibition. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Paulis Liepa. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Paulis Liepa. Photo: Martins Vizbulis

Liepa graduated from the Graphic Art Department at the Art Academy of Latvia (2003), and with his vivid and recognisable individual style, is currently one of the most well-known of Latvian graphic artists. He works with the most basic of graphic techniques – collagraphy and cardboard block printing. Alongside his graphics work, Liepa also does book design, illustration, and animation. His distinct visual style has evolved from various modernist influences, especially the aesthetics of the 1960s and 70s.

Rasa Šmite and Raitis Šmits for the solo exhibition Fluctuation of Microworlds at the RIXC Centre for New Media Culture in autumn 2017.


Raitis Šmits getting ready for the exhibitio. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Rasa Šmite and Raitis Šmits. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


Photo: Kristīne Madjare

Both Rasa Šmite and Raitis Šmits have graduated from the Latvian Academy of Arts and the ArtEZ University of Arts in the Netherlands. They both hold PhD degrees – Rasa Šmite’s is in cultural and media sociology from Riga Stradiņš University (thesis: Creative Network Communities, 2011), while Raitis Šmits’ is from the Latvian Academy of Art (thesis: New Media Art. Preserving and Representation Problematics, 2015). 

Rasa Šmite and Raitis Šmits are innovative artists who merge art with science and modern technologies. The have been working in electronic media art both in Latvia and abroad since 1996, and can therefore be considered pioneers of new media art in their home country. The artists are also co-founders of the RIXC Centre for New Media Culture (2000); they organise the annual RIXC Art Science Festival and publish books and translations on new media art. 

THE ORBITA TEXT GROUP (Artur Punte, Vladimir Svetlov, Sergey Timofeyev and Alexandr Zapol) for the group exhibition Where Do Poems Come From at the floating art gallery NOASS in the summer of 2018.


The text group Orbita. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


The text group Orbita. Photo: Kristīne Madjare


The text group Orbita. Photo: Martins Vizbulis


The text group Orbita. Photo: Martins Vizbulis

The text group Orbita is an association of poets and multimedia artists founded in Riga in 1999. The creative profile of the Orbita group is exceptionally broad – they: print bilingual books and multimedia recordings; publish works of poetry, prose and photography by participants of the group and many other authors; organise exhibitions and festivals of video poetry, contemporary art and multimedia installations; and both individually and as a group participate with their work in various literary and artistic events in Latvia and abroad. 


Photo: Martins Vizbulis

The Purvītis Prize was founded as an initiative of the Latvian National Museum of Art with the support of Alfor Ltd. company, the patron of the museum, in the early 2008. The prize is awarded biennially to an artist or a group of artists rated the highest by a panel of judges. The objective of the Latvian National Museum of Art in founding a new visual arts prize was to gather regular and systematic information about the latest visual arts events in Latvia, promote development of new projects and original ideas, and acknowledge the best achievements in Latvian professional visual arts.