Leopold Bloom Art Award 2019

16. June 2019. – 25. August
MegnyitóOpening: June 15, 2019, 6:00 pm
The Leopold Bloom Art Award, which has been announced every two years since 2011, now for the fifth time, is designed to support the international career building of Hungarian artists. The winner of the 10,000-euro award will be announced by the jury at the Ludwig Museum on June 15th, that is, on the eve of the International Bloomsday celebration, where the finalists will be presented in the exhibition space of Westkunst-Ostkunst. As in the past, half a hundred applications were received again, of which the three-member international jury selected the six artists who became the finalists and exhibitors of the June ceremony.

Finalists of the 2019 Leopold Bloom Award are: Zsolt Asztalos, Sári Ember, Krisztina Erdei, Áron Kútvölgyi-Szabó, Zsolt Molnár and Kata Tranker.

The prize was founded by the Irish couple Mary McLoughlin and John Ward collectors, owners of Maurice Ward transport and art transport company. The award is named after the Hungarian-born protagonist of James Joyce’s Ulysses, a masterpiece of twentieth-century world literature, to promote the importance of independent and innovative art, international cultural relations. Joyce chose June 16, 1904 as the day of the Ulysses’ plot, and this fictitious day has now become a true international holiday, the organizers of the award ceremony have adapted to this. The winner of the prize will receive support for the creation of an international exhibition.

Applicants, regardless of age, were able to submit their applications before the beginning of April. One of the specialties of the Leopold Bloom Prize is that its founders and organizers do not participate in the decision in any way, only the president of the jury is personally invited. Paul O’Neill, chairman of the 2019 jury, is the artistic director of the PUBLICS curatorial agency, event venue and library in Helsinki. Other members of the jury are Gabriela Kotiková and Noor Mertens.

Zsolt Asztalos, who represented Hungary at the Venice Biennale of Fine Arts in 2013 with his work Fired but Unexploded, is a conceptual artist examining issues of remembrance. One of the most active artists of the recent period, Sári Ember, came from the portrait photo to the abstraction and reduction of the human head and the use of a variety of artistic media (paper collage, marble statue). Krisztina Erdei’s subtle humorous, poetic photographs examine the possibilities of socially committed art. Sculptor Kútvölgyi-Szabó Áron is interested in the dilemmas of the post-truth era. Zsolt Molnár came to the installations from picture graphics, his works are created in the common space of abstraction and function, they are characterized by an exciting and enigmatic frame of reference, most recently of agriculture. Kata Tranker’s detailed, subtle, intimate works deal with the general issues of our everyday lives, the ephemeral materials, the delicate compositions made with fine joints evoking the concepts of fragility and transience.