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Monumental Fragility at the European Prize for Applied Arts

Oct 29, 2018

The European Prize for Applied Arts explores the contemporary relevance of craftsmanship with works that explore Fragility and Monumentality

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Monumentality/Fragility – the two words seem to present an oxymoron with connotations of strength and weakness, grandeur and delicacy, awesomeness and vulnerability. However, when inspected closer, it becomes clear that the two words deal with many of the tensions and existential questions of our times.

With a call to respond to this theme, the jury of the European Prize for Applied Arts was overwhelmed by more than 600 applications. Whitling the final selection down to 77 creators from 19 countries, the chosen works are presented at the Grand Hall of the Mons Anciens Abattoirs site as part of the Mons Biennale. These pieces are versatile in their material and form and include works of ceramics, glass, metal and textiles. Despite the diversity, each piece somehow conveys the relevance of applied arts as a field of practice today.

To mark the opening of the European Prize for Applied Arts exhibition on October 20, two works were selected as the overall winners of two awards.

Talk to Me by UK metal craftswoman Adi Toch was awarded The Master Prize by the Federation Wallonia-Brussels(cover image). It is an interactive installation made up of vessels that invite the viewer to speak to them to explore how their voice moves and transforms as it travels through the metal objects. The vessels sit on spindly stilts and quiver with the sound waves. She challenges the notion of a quiet gallery space by playfully inviting people to make noise in the exhibition.

Takayoshi Terakima took home The Young Talent Prize which was awarded by the WCC Europe. His piece Omamori was inspired by the auspicious Japanese amulet which led him to question whether jewelry can be a container for its wearer’s wishes. The jewelry is finished in enamel and straddles the border between object and accessory. It examines the function of jewelry which can be worn for very personal and spiritual reasons or to signify status, wealth and power.

The other finalist works on display are: Jordi Aparicio (ES), Peter Beard (UK), Ulla Bech-Bruun (DK), George William Bell (DK), Cécile Bertrand (B), Claudia Biehne (DE), Marian Bijlenga (NL), Juli Bolaños-Durman (UK), Kris Campo (B), Sébastien Carré (FR), Valérie Ceulemans (B), Ray Church (UK), Gabriela Cohn (ES), Niki Collier (IE), Trinidad Contreras (ES), Eimear Conyard (IE), Mária Danielová (CZ), Karine De Baets (B), Marion Delarue (FR), Francine Delmotte (B), Patricia Domingues (DE), Dot Melanin (DE), Sally Fawkes & Richard Jackson (UK), Ann-Kathrin Hartel (DE), Ariane Hartmann (DE), Dorottya Hoffmann (HU), Joe Hogan (IE), Lucie Houdkova (CZ), Melanie Isverding (DE), Statira Jazayeri (SE), Nicola Kelly (IE), Jane King (UK), Zuzana Kubelková (CZ), Julia Maria Künnap (EE), Dominique Labordery (DE), Nicholas Lees (UK), James Lethbridge (B), Lena Lindahl (SE), Réka Lörincz (HU), Kadri Mälk (EE), Vicktoria Matsuka (RS), Harry Morgan (UK), Nadège Mouyssinat (FR), Susan Nemeth (UK), Janne Nes (NO), Artis Nimanis (LV), Cóilín Ó Dubhghaill (UK), Jiun-You Ou (DE), Wiebke Pandikow (FIN), Annemarie Reinhold (IE), Loukia Richards (GR), Päivi Rintaniemi (FIN), Bruno Romanelli (UK), Kristina Rothe (DE), Rita Sarafian (UK), Helena Schepens (B), Martin Schlotz (DE), Caroline Schofield (IE), Karin Seufert (DE), Astrid Sleire (NO), Alejandra Solar (LU), Sophie Southgate (UK), Dimitar Stankov (B), Anna Talbot (NO),Takayoshi Terajima (DE), Adi Toch (UK), Flora Vagi (HU), Felieke van der Leest (NO), Ute van der Plaats (B), Reinhilde Van Grieken (B), Karen Vanmol (B), Graziano Visintin (IT), Olivia Walker (ES), Simon Ward (UK),Fabienne Withofs (B), Annamaria Zanella (IT)

The European Prize for Applied Arts will be on display until January 20, 2019. The exhibition is organized by BeCraft, in partnership with the City of Mons and the WCC-Europe. Supported by the Federation Wallonia-Brussels

European Prize for Applied Arts
BERTRAND Cecile, Bobonne, 2016 Photography by C. Bertrand
European Prize for Applied Arts
CEULEMANS Valérie, Inutile et pleine de Grâce, 2017 Photography by Valloma
European Prize for Applied Arts
FAWKES Sally, Two Views III, 2017 Photography by R.Jackson
European Prize for Applied Arts
NES Janne, Pink, 2018 Photography by Janne Nes
European Prize for Applied Arts
TERAJIMA, Takayoshi, OMAMORI, 2018 Photography by M.Nagata
European Prize for Applied Arts
VAN DER PLAATS Ute, Secret Garden Necklace, 2018 Photography by Erwin Maes
European Prize for Applied Arts
Ward Simon , Foiled vase, 2017 Photography by M.Wolchover
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