Christopher Gray announced as winner of
XL Catlin Art Prize 2016
Jamie Fitzpatrick wins Visitor Vote
Londonewcastle Project Space, 28 Redchurch Street, London E2 7DP
Thursday 5th – Sunday 22nd May 2016
Filmmaker Christopher Gray has won the prestigious XL Catlin Art Prize 2016 for his latest work, Death by Chair. Using hand puppets made from latex chicken skin to replicate human flesh, Gray's video is set in a medieval torture chamber and explores the duality of fear and fascination evoked by violence. The award carries a prize of £5,000.
The expert panel of judges - acclaimed artist and former Turner Prize nominee Mark Titchner; Senior Curator of Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Helen Pheby PhD; and Vanessa Carlos, founder and director of Carlos/Ishikawa – praised the finalists for their commitment and the high quality of the work made for this year's exhibition.
Helen Pheby PhD comments, Christopher Gray's video is powerful and affecting. It's brilliantly conceived and realised, triggering questions around the brutal and brutalised. We were really impressed by the quality and diversity in this year's prize. It didn't make for easy judging, but it's an excellent signifier of how creative practice is thriving in the UK. On the evidence of this work, all of the shortlisted artists are definitely ones to watch.
Winner of the 2016 XL Catlin Art Prize, Christopher Gray, comments, I feel overwhelmed with happiness right now and amazed that I’ve won the prize. More than anything working with Justin Hammond has really helped me to develop as an artist. I have so much respect and admiration for the XL Catlin Prize; to win it is a massive honour for me and it’s built up my confidence as an artist. The work I do is quite controversial and to get this support is a really big thing. This piece is to do with fictional violence and I have been looking in mainstream cinema and how it’s quite prolific. Society to a large extent has become de-sensitised to violence. Once you put violence in a different context, you become sensitive to it again. If you look at the level of violence in the film there’s a lot more in cinema which doesn’t shock nearly as much as it does in the form of puppets. I think I’m still in shock!
Visitors to the XL Catlin Art Prize have also been able to take part in selecting their favourite artist. Jamie Fitzpatrick was named the winner of the Visitor Vote and takes away the £2,000 award in an extremely close-run contest.
The exhibition remains open to the public until 7pm on Sunday 22nd May at Londonewcastle Project Space. Curated by Justin Hammond, the XL Catlin Art Prize provides a platform for the most promising art graduates in the UK and is now established as an important showcase for early-career artists, providing them with the opportunity to realise ambitious and exciting new projects. Finalists have been selected from the annual XL Catlin Art Guide for their potential to make an impact in the art world over the next decade and beyond.
This year's full list of finalists is: Rory Biddulph (Slade School of Fine Art, MA Fine Art), Jude Crilly (Royal College of Art, MA Sculpture), Jamie Fitzpatrick, (Royal College of Art, MA Sculpture), Christopher Gray (Goldsmiths, BA Fine Art & History of Art), Jane Hayes Greenwood (City & Guilds of London Art School, MA Fine Art), Hamish Pearch (Camberwell College of Arts, BA Sculpture) and Neal Rock (Royal College of Art, PhD Painting by Practice).
Notes to Editors
Title: XL Catlin Art Prize 2016
Exhibition Dates: Thursday 5th – Sunday 22nd May 2016
Location: Londonewcastle Project Space, 28 Redchurch Street, London E2 7DP
Opening Hours: Monday – Sunday, 11am – 7pm
Tuesday 17th May, 11am – 4pm
Getting there: Londonewcastle is located just off Shoreditch High Street. The nearest underground stations are Old Street (on the Northern line), Liverpool Street (on the Central, Circle, Metropolitan and Hammersmith & City lines) and Shoreditch High Street (on the London overground). The nearest rail station is London Liverpool Street.
XL Catlin Art Prize
Celebrating its 10th year in 2016, the XL Catlin Art Prize is an annual event showcasing the most promising art school graduates one year on from their degree exhibitions. The Art Prize is sponsored by XL Catlin and is unique in providing the artists with the time and opportunity to develop their practice, encouraging them to demonstrate their progress by producing a new body of work to be exhibited at Londonewcastle Project Space. The finalists are selected from the XL Catlin Art Guide and are considered to be producing work of an outstanding quality, which demonstrates their capacity to make a significant mark in the art world during the next decade. The author of the XL Catlin Art Guide and curator of the XL Catlin Art Prize is the independent curator and art writer Justin Hammond. For more information, please see www.xlcatlinart.com.
XL Catlin is the global brand used by XL Group plc's (NYSE:XL) insurance and reinsurance companies which provide property, casualty, professional and specialty products to industrial, commercial and professional firms, insurance companies and other enterprises throughout the world. Clients look to XL Catlin for answers to their most complex risks and to help move their world forward. To learn more, visit www.xlcatlin.com.
XL Catlin Art Guide
Now in its 7th edition, the XL Catlin Art Guide is an annual publication which also acts as a longlist for the XL Catlin Art Prize. It is available to buy for £12.99 from Waterstones, and selected booksellers.
All enquiries, high res images and further information:
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