Cornelia Parker To Present The Contemporary Art Society Annual Award

The Contemporary Art Society ‘Annual Award’ takes place on 14th November

The Annual Award, “Commission to collect ” sponsored by The Contemporary Art Society has announced that this years prize will be presented by atiist Cornelia Parker. The reception for the Award will take place in London on 14th November. The winning museum will be awarded £60,000, a generous fund made possible thanks to the Sfumato Foundation, this will enable the winner to work closely with an artist to commission a new work that will, once completed,  become part of the permanent collection. This is the largest fund of its type and provides a much needed investment in new art for public collections, as a legacy for the future.

Cornelia Parker, who is famed for her beautiful and thought provoking sculptures and most recently for her inspired selection of works from the Government Collection currently showing at the Whitechapel Art Gallery, will present the prize at a ceremony at the  German Gymnasium, a hidden architectural gem in the heart of London’s busy Kings Cross area. The winner will have been chosen by a selection panel from an initial long list of 22 and then a shortlist of five museums from across the country. Each shortlisted museum has, over the last 3 months, been developing a detailed proposal with the artist that they have chosen to work with. Having invested so much time and expectation all involved feel that there is much at stake as the panel make their final decision.
The Selection Panel includes:- Adam Chodzko (Artist), Maurice Davies (Head of Policy, Museums Association), Rosy Greenlees (Director, Crafts Council), Michael Stanley(Director, Modern Art Oxford).

Cornelia Parker says “I’m delighted to be presenting this year’s Contemporary Art Society Award. In my early career the Society bought a number of my works that are now in collections in this country and gave me the support I needed at the right time. As an artist I know how important it is that museums commission new works for the public to enjoy. The award is particularly significant in the current financial climate.” Cornelia Parker.

The Contemporary Art Society exists to develop public collections of contemporary art across the UK and has done so since 1910. The Annual Award continues this important work and exists as the most generous opportunity alongside other Acquisitions Schemes. Public collections held within regional museums in this country have a wonderful history and hold fantastic works of art. The Annual Award enables one museum each year to work with an artist, through a creative process, an opportunity to produce new work makes it possible for museums to make inspiring links between the artist, their work and the very large audiences that visit and participate in museums in this country.  The Contemporary Art Society believes that to ensure that the most interesting art of the day finds its way in to public collections is vital for audiences now and in the future.

The Annual Award of £60,000 aims to encourage leading contemporary artists and museums to work together to realise inspirational new works of contemporary art for their local audiences.  We have been delighted by the volume and the quality of applications to our Annual Award in this, its third year.  Once again, we are excited by such a strong selection of museums proposing internationally acclaimed artists of this calibre to create major new works for their collections.  The selection panel has a particularly difficult decision to make this year and we all look forward to their announcement in November.’ Paul Hobson, Director, Contemporary Art Society
Previous winners include the Hepworth Wakefield and Wolverhampton Art Gallery for their proposal with Luke Fowler and Museums Sheffield, the Graves Art Gallery with Katerina Seda.
The third year of the Contemporary Art Society’s Annual Award – commission to collect, has been shortlisted by the following 2011 selectors:
Adam Chodzko (Artist), Maurice Davies (Head of Policy, Museums Association), Rosy Greenlees (Director, Crafts Council), Michael Stanley (Director, Modern Art Oxford).

The CAS Award For Museum Shortlist, 2011:
National Museum Wales (Cardiff) with Artes Mundi                  Proposal with artist Andrea Büttner
Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery                                     Proposal with artist Christina Mackie
Shipley Art Gallery                                                                                           Proposal with artist Matthew Darbyshire
Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool                   Proposal with artist Wael Shawky
University of Warwick Art Collection                                                       Proposal with artist Katie Paterson
This is another initiative that meets the Contemporary Art Society’s mission to develop public collections of contemporary art across the UK. The charity has gifted over 8,000 works over a period of 100 years, supporting  artists when they were young and little known and ensuring that some of the most important works are represented in collections across the UK.

The  CAS Annual Award Shortlist  commission proposals in detail:
National Museum Wales (Cardiff) <>  is proposing to work in partnership with Artes Mundi to commission artist Andrea Büttner.  Büttner’s practise is grounded in print making, with a significant body of wood-cuts at its core, but extends across a wide range of media including photography, film, sound, installation and sculpture. Craft holds an important place in her practise, whether through the use of materials and processes such as unfired clay, textiles, pressed flowers and bookbinding or in the depiction of craft objects. This relationship to traditional often unfashionable materials and processes make the encyclopaedic collections at the National Museum Wales particularly fascinating for Büttner. Over the past 10 years National Museum Wales has worked with Artes Mundi to significantly develop their collection of international contemporary art – this commission would generate an exciting new dimension to the partnership and be an opportunity for skill sharing between the two organisations.
Büttner was born in Stuttgart in 1972. In 2010 she was awarded a PhD at the Royal College of Art London. In the same year Büttner was awarded the Max Mara Prize for Women. This led to a residency in Italy followed by her solo exhibition The Poverty of Riches at Whitechapel in April 2011. Büttner is represented by Hollybush Gardens, London.

Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery <> is proposing to commission artist Christina Mackie. Christina Mackie’s sculptural installations combine diverse natural, manmade and crafted materials to create a complex web of associations. Over the years she has developed a sophisticated materials-based language to give physical form to her personal thought processes. Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery has an eclectic mix of collections and experiences which they feel will provide a rich context for Mackie’s work.  Housed within a 17th century ducal mansion on a hill above a network of caves and the remains of a medieval castle, it is part art museum, part heritage site and pleasure grounds. Mackie’s practice touches on painting, watercolour, drawing, ceramics, textiles, photography, film – the curators at Nottingham see opportunities to make connections between Mackie’s work and so many aspects of their collections. 
Christina Mackie (b. 1956) lives and works in London. In 2005 she won Becks Futures, and in 2010 was the winner of the Paul Hamlyn Prize for Artists. She has exhibited at Tate, Henry Moore Institute, Modern Art Oxford, Baltic and De La Warr Pavilion. She is currently working towards a solo exhibition at the Chisenhale. Mackie is represented by Herald Street, London

Shipley Art Gallery <>  is proposing to commission artist Matthew Darybshire. Matthew Darbyshire’s work brings to our attention the design of everyday environments. Their essence is presented through installations constructed from the familiar design language of contemporary culture, from Arne Jacobson’s Egg Chair to a pair of Ugg Boots. The result initially is one of deja vu, swiftly interjected by a cacophony created by the saturation of excess and pervasive design.  The Shipley Art Gallery’s craft and design collection began in 1977 and today it is one of the most significant collections in the UK.  Conversations between Darbyshire and the Shipley have highlighted his enthusiasm for engaging with both a public building and an established collection featuring design objects. 

Matthew Darbyshire (b.1977) lives and works in London. He studied at Slade School of Art and Royal Academy.  He has since exhibited widely both nationally and internationally. In 2012 he will be the Stanley Picker Fellow.  He is currently working towards a solo exhibition at Tramway, Glasgow in 2012. Darbyshire is represented by Herald Street, London
Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool <>  is proposing to commission Egyptian artist Wael Shawky.  Wael Shawky is concerned with the complex relationship between politics and religion, fundamentalism and capitalism, religious ritual and the role of the media. He examines transitional events in the medieval ancient and modern history of the Arab world. Cabaret Crusades, is a recent body of work that explores the crusades of 1096-1099 from the perspective of Arab historians. This work is emblematic of Shawky’s interest in working with museums and their collections and it is this that has ignited the proposal. The diversity of the Walker’s holdings of predominantly European fine and decorative arts, spanning the middle ages to the present day, will form the starting point for Shawky’s proposed commission. The commission will be a partnership between Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool Arabic Arts Festival (LAAF), Foundation for Art and Creative Technology (FACT) and the Liverpool Biennial.
Wael Shawky (born in 1971), lives and works in Alexandria, Egypt. Last year he launched MASS Alexandria, the city’s first independent studio and study programme for young artists. Shawky is acclaimed for his work as an artist and filmmaker. He has exhibited internationally, including at the Venice and Istanbul Biennales. In February 2011 he won the Ernst Schering Foundation Art Award. A forthcoming exhibition at KW Institute of Contemporary Art in Berlin is part of his prize.

University of Warwick Art Collection <> is proposing to commission artist Katie Paterson. Katie Paterson’s artistic practice is cross-medium, multi-disciplinary and conceptually driven, with an emphasis on nature, ecology, geology and cosmology. She uses leading science and technology to create a contemporary approach to the sublime.  Recent artworks include Earth–Moon–Earth (Moonlight Sonata Reflected from the Surface of the Moon), 2007 which involved the transmission of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata to the moon and back; Vatnajökull (the sound of), 2007-8 – a live phone line to an Icelandic glacier; and All the Dead Stars, 2009; a large map documenting the locations of the 27,000 dead stars known to humanity.  It is Paterson’s interest in the stars that finds resonance with the University of Warwick, and in particular with the work of the Astronomy and Astrophysics group at the University.