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19th Festival's Awards + Residency Prizes

The 19th Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil | Southern Panoramas will award a greater number of prizes. In addition to the Grand Prize worth BRL 75,000 in cash (gross) and its nine residency prizes, the 19th Festival will see the launch of a special prize: the SP-Arte Prize. Eligible artists include the 53 artists selected via a call for artwork entries participating in an exhibition and in film programs set to run at Sesc Pompeia and Galpão_VB, in São Paulo, Brazil, from October 6 to December 6, 2015. The winners will be announced on October 10, in a ceremony at Sesc Pompeia’s Teatro, at 6 pm.

For the first time, the Festival is awarding the SP-Arte Prize, designed to encourage and publicize the work of young artists whose lines of research focus on the debate surrounding the Global South. The initiative is part of SP-Arte’s program, in partnership with Videobrasil, to provide incentive to artists and foster up-and-coming talent. The winner will be featured in a solo exhibit at Galpão_VB during the SP-Arte fair (April 7 to 10, 2016), a time when São Paulo takes to the global stage as it hosts the most relevant art market event in the Southern Hemisphere.

To Solange Farkas, Videobrasil’s director and the Festival’s chief curator, the Residency Prizes, first awarded in 1990, help usher in a new artistic and cultural cartography: "The prizes support Global South artists through displacement experiences, allowing them to enrich their practices through interaction and exchange with new interlocutors and new surroundings." The selected artists undertake two-month residencies at Videobrasil Residency Program partner organizations around the world. Thanks to Videobrasil’s becoming a part of a vast network of collaborators, the program already spanned all five continents, and for the 19th Festival it will cover Latin America, North America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, bringing together the South-South and South-North axes.

The winners will be picked out by an international jury nominated considering a simple, but effective strategy to heighten these artists’ chances of becoming a part of the global arts scenario. This year, the Award Jury is composed of: Hoor Al-Qasimi (UAE), curator and president of the Sharjah Art Foundation, which holds the Sharjah Biennial; N’Goné Fall (Senegal), the photography curator for the Bamako Biennale (2001) and the Dakar Biennale (2002), art critic, and former Revue Noir editorial director; Priscila Arantes (Brazil), curator, art critic and the director of Paço das Artes (São Paulo); the duo Sam Bardaouil (Lebanon) and Till Fellrath (Germany), curators and founding partners of the Art Reoriented multidisciplinary curatorial platform; and Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy (Mexico), curator, editor and curator of contemporary art for Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. Following a discussion involving delegates from Videobrasil Residency Program partner organizations, the artists will be assigned to the residencies that best match their lines of inquiry and poetics.


19th Festival Artist Residencies

The emphasis on tradition and on the local art scene is manifested in the work of Arquetopia, in Puebla, which invites residents to learn about Mexico’s history and current scenario, encouraging them to re-signify traditional practices into the contemporary art context. In Brazil, Residence Vila Sul, offered by Goethe-Institut Salvador, focuses on the South America-Africa connection and on conceptualizing the Global South, featuring ideal facilities for exhibitions and activities in various formats.

Djerassi Resident Artists Program, the leading artist residency program in Western USA, offers residents uninterrupted work, reflection, and interaction in a full immersion setting known for its natural beauty in Woodside. Cultural exchange between artists, the university community, and the public are the targets of the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, affiliated with the Ohio State University, underscoring its commitment to feeding creative expression through its residency program. The Festival’s collaboration with these residencies is enabled by Res Artis, an association devoted to fostering artist residencies with over 500 collaborators in more than 70 countries.

Res Artis’ prizes also enable exchanges at the Kooshk Residency, which works out of Tehran to encourage Iranian arts and culture through exchange programs and by bringing local collaborators together for conversations, exhibitions and presentations featuring the residents; and at the residency program of the Kyoto Art Center, a space where various art genres come together to connect with the city’s tradition and the heavily technological and industrial daily lives of its citizens. Also in Asia, the Red Gate Residency, supported on this occasion by the China Art Foundation, commits to fostering multicultural dialogue in an immersive setting, as it gets resident artists in touch with the Beijing community and art scene, materials and techniques.

Relationships with the local environment and community are the focus of A-I-R Laboratory, the residency program of the Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw, Poland, which encourages artists to present their work at public spaces, for increased involvement from the local population. And although it does not limit itself to a specific geographical area, the Delfina Foundation in London, UK, has built close ties with the Middle East, North Africa, and Southern Asia, and keeps getting stronger as an incubator and a creator of opportunities for artists to position their practices in a worldwide discourse.

Works by contemporary artists as the Festival’s trophies

The winning artists will be awarded an artwork created by Efrain Almeida (Ceará/Brazil) which sees him pay tribute to the visual arts by putting a current spin on a recurring symbol from his own production: a pair of eyes, a reference to Saint Lucy, the protector of sight. His sculpture will be exhibited alongside the selected artists’ works, at Sesc Pompeia. Almeida was featured in the 29th São Paulo Art Biennial (2010), the 10th Havana Biennial (2009) and the 15th Cerveira Biennial (2009), and his work is part of the collections of Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea (Spain), the São Paulo Museum of Modern Art (Brazil) and the Museum of Modern Art — MoMA (USA). This award strategy, which also sets the Festival apart, was also adopted from the get-go, with past collaborators including the likes of Tunga, Rosângela Rennó, Carmela Gross, Erika Verzutti, Tatiana Blass and Luiz Zerbini, among others.

Awards and Prizes Overview

Grand Prize:
BRL 75,000 in cash (gross)

SP-Arte Prize:
Solo exhibition at Galpão_VB

Residency Prizes:

A-I-R Laboratory Residency Prize @A-I-R Laboratory, Warsaw, Poland

Arquetopia_Videobrasil Residency Prize @ Arquetopia, Puebla, Mexico

China Art Foundation Residency Prize @ Red Gate Residency, Beijing, China

Delfina_Videobrasil Residency Prize @ Delfina Foundation, London, UK

Residence Vila Sul – Goethe-Institut Residency Prize @ Residence Vila Sul, Salvador, Brazil

Res Artis Residency Prize @ Djerassi Resident Artists Program, Woodside, USA

Res Artis Residency Prize @ Kooshk Residency, Tehran, Iran

Res Artis Residency Prize @ Kyoto Art Center, Kyoto, Japan

Wexner Center for the Arts Residency Prize @ Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, USA


(From press information)

19th Contemporary Art Festival
Sesc_Videobrasil: Southern Panoramas

6 October - 6 December 2015

São Paulo, Brazil

General curator:
Solange Farkas

Guest curators:
Bernardo José de Souza
Bitu Cassundé
João Laia
Júlia Rebouças

53 artists and groups | selected via
Artworks Call for Entries
4 artists | selected via
Art Projects Call for Entries
from 25 countries

Guest Artists:
Abdoulaye Konaté (Mali), Gabriel Abrantes (Portugal), Rodrigo Matheus (Brazil), Sonia Gomes (Brazil) and Yto Barrada (Morocco/France)

Produced by:
SESC São Paulo & Associação Cultural Videobrasil


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