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Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2024

By 25th March 2024April 9th, 2024No Comments

Recently opened at The Photographers’ Gallery, the exhibition of the 2024 edition of the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize features a range of international artists – all of whom have been shortlisted for the prize for their innovative, thought-provoking work.

At the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2024 exhibition, VALIE EXPORT, Gauri Gill & Rajesh Vangad, Lebohang Kganye, and Hrair Sarkissian all present projects which critically engage with urgent contemporary issues. From the remnants of war and conflict, the experiences of diasporic communities and decolonisation, to contested land, heritage, equality and gender – the included works deliver insightful, sensitive reflections. Together these artists demonstrate photography’s unique capacity to reveal what is invisible, forgotten or marginalised, and imagine a path to redress.

While widely revered for her performance art, VALIE EXPORT has always placed photography at the heart of her artistic practice. Using the camera to explore the representations which permeate her work, VALIE transforms photography from a documentary tool into a method of critical deconstruction, reevaluating the photographic gaze in an explicitly gendered context. VALIE is nominated for the exhibition VALIE EXPORT – The Photographs (Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland, 25th February – 29th May 2023).

Further inviting viewers to explore hidden layers of meaning, Gauri Gill and Rajesh Vangad present a collaboration of photography and traditional painting. In the book which forms the basis of their nomination, Fields of Sight (2023), Warli painting – a style of Indian folk art – fuses with black and white landscape photography, interweaving historical and generational painting practices into a photographic object. According to The Photographers’ Gallery, ‘this complex image dialogue addresses the politics of aesthetics, environmental destruction, memory and decolonisation.’

Renowned for her sensitive exploration of history, Lebohang Kganye draws on personal and collective histories from before, during and after apartheid to examine notions of home, heritage and belonging. She has been shortlisted for the exhibition Haufi nyana? I’ve come to take you home (Foam, Amsterdam, 17th February – 21st May 2023); her vast, experimental installations create a space between memory and fantasy, (re)enacting theatrical scripts based on familial stories and South African literature.

By intricately weaving personal and political narratives, Hrair Sarkissian explores themes of conflict, displacement and memory. Hrair is shortlisted for the exhibition The Other Side of Silence (Bonnefanten Museum, Maastricht, 29th November 2022 – 14th May 2023). In this work, ostensibly meditative landscapes become stages for accounts of trauma and the expression of underlying socio-political realities.

After the London exhibition closes on 2nd June, the work will be on show at the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation in Eschborn/Frankfurt, Germany, from 15th June to 22nd September 2024. The winner of the £30,000 prize will be announced at an award ceremony at The Photographers’ Gallery on 16th May 2024, with the other finalists each receiving £5,000.