The Recipient of the 2nd Edvard Munch Award for Contemporary Art is Alice Creischer
14 November at 18:00
The Office for Contemporary Art Norway is pleased to announce Alice Creischer as the recipient of this year&8217;s Edvard Munch Award for Contemporary Art. Alice Creischer (b. 1960, lives and works in Berlin) was selected by an international jury that included Roger Buergel, Lynne Cooke, Jörg Heiser, Marta Kuzma, Bartomeu Mari, and Dirk Snauwaert. The award, accompanied by a remuneration of 350,000 NOK and a six-month residency at the Munch Estate in Oslo, will be presented on 14 November 2006 in Oslo. The Edvard Munch Award for Contemporary Art has evolved into an important acknowledgement of artists whose practices critically engage social and political issues and contexts. Amar Kanwar was its first recipient of the Award in 2005.
Socio-political issues are at the very crux of the artistic practice pursued by Alice Creischer. Rather than concentrating on the production of individual works, the artist centers on the process of inquiry to illuminate particular political histories of given contexts. Concepts of time, labour, and exploitation are investigated in projects whereby Creischer sets out a scenography in positioning her discourse. Adopting prop-like devices and meticulously crafted and sewn objects, Creischer choreographs a space within a system of coordinates that deconstruct yet another set of given historical relations. By setting up different scenarios in a simultaneous manner, Creischer transposes a world history in relation to Karl Marx&8217;s concept around the original accumulation of capital.
For The Greatest Happiness Principle Party held at the Secession in Vienna in 2001, Creischer developed an exhibition layout by abstracting from theoretical research around the machinations of politics and business and their culture. The artist referenced a real historical event by transforming an intended gallery into an allegorical space. Framed within the backdrop of 1931, the project unfolds within a fixed point in time-the bank Austrian Credit Institute has rented one of the rooms of Secession for a party. It is a party without any major conflicts. Relying on a constructed field of inquiry, the viewer learns certain historical facts-that the bank triggered the second major world economic crisis through speculation in the Balkans. In an inventive staging of simultaneous scenarios, Creischer intertwines the premise of reason set out in the Enlightenment with the transformation of existence into value as proliferated by an ever-expanding market economy.
Extending beyond artistic production, Creischer has also been prolific in her critical writings and curatorial projects. In 2002, together with Andreas Siekmann, she curated Violence on the Margin of All Things at the Generali Foundation in Vienna. Uniting approximately twenty different artistic contributions from the U.S., Argentina, and Europe, the project addressed the theme of militancy in terms of its historic and artistic modes. Creischer and Siekmann drew on historical positions as reference material to integrate the entirety of the project into a theater situation with the exhibition architecture arranged as stage and backstage.
These projects, among many others realized in past years, led this year&8217;s international jury for the Edvard Munch Award for Contemporary Art to select Alice Creischer. The Oslo based artist residency will commence in Spring 2007, during which Creischer will participate in a solo exhibition at MACBA in Barcelona in Fall 2007.
The award presentation will take place at 18:00 on 14 November at the Aula in Oslo. The Aula was built in 1911 and houses Munch&8217;s monumental paintings — History and Alma Mater. The Munch Award will be introduced by Her Majesty the Queen of Norway and the awards ceremony will include a presentation by the artist entitled L&8217;atelier de la Peintrice.