The Artes Mundi prize results in one of the finest exhibitions in the art world calendar and the Artes Mundi shortlist 2012 was announced in early 2012, leading up to the 5th installation at the Welsh National Museum of Art in Cardiff later in the year. Bringing together some of the world’s best contemporary artists, the prize is worth a massive £40,000 to the winner and the results have been worth every penny based on the sheer blinding quality of previous exhibitions, shortlisted artists and winners.
The shortlist for the fifth Artes Mundi Prize was announced on the 26th January 2012 by Ben Borthwick, Artes Mundi’s Chief Executive and Artistic Director. The seven artists picked for the Artes Mundi shortlist 2012, are discussed in more detail below. The prize was sponsored by Bank of America Merrill Lynch as part of its Arts and Culture Programme, and publicly funded by the Arts Council of Wales and Cardiff Council.
Artes Mundi 5, 2012 shortlisted artists:
- Miriam Bäckström (Sweden) – Miriam’s tapestry, Smile as if we have already won, was a big feature of the Artes Mundi 2012 exhibition with it’s 3m high and 12m wide double-sided view hanging depicting figures in a room made entirely of mirrors to interlace the concepts of memory with media.
- Tania Bruguera (Cuba) – Tania’s rebellion against the constraints of gallery space meant that her installation, social intervention and performance art were displayed in the open spaces of the Museum itself and in the city beyond, which included a poster campaign for her Immigrant Respect Campaign.
- Phil Collins (England) – Luckily not the singer, Phil explores the nature of humanity in performances captured in film and photography for Artes Mundi 5.
- Sheela Gowda (India) – Exploring social issues that envelope India through a mix of media including painting and installation.
- Winner: Teresa Margolles (Mexico) – Teresa’s work centres for her entry to Artes Mundi 5 centres around the social difficulties in Northern Mexican territories where drugs and organised crime have spawned little but violence, bloodshed and murder.
- Darius Mikšys (Lithuania) – Mikšys’ work for the exhibition centres around the formation of art through conceptual pieces that challenge our understanding of it and its origins.
- Apolonija Šušteršič (Slovenia) – The socio-political, economic and environmental issues surrounding modern regeneration projects take centre stage in Apolonija Šušteršič’s video work for the 2012 Artes Mundi exhibition.
Their submitted work went on to be brought together for the Artes Mundi exhibition at Wales’s National Museum of Art from the 6th October 2012 and earned them £4,000 for their contribution. Running for 14 weeks, the exhibition celebrated the amazing creativity and artistic voice of the contemporary artists shortlisted.
The exhibition was also marked with the announcement of the prize winner half-way through the exhibition in November 2012. Theresa Margolles went on to win the prize for her mix of sculpture and performance installations as she probed her forensic scalpel under the skin of the economy of death.