Lebanese artist wins international photography prize

NEW YORK: U.S.-based Lebanese artist Walid Raad has won the 2011 Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography.

At a ceremony in New York City Tuesday, the Swiss foundation bestowed a prize equivalent to approximately $150,000 upon the artist, along with a diploma and a gold medal.

In feting Raad’s work, the foundation wrote that he “is one of the most original and singular contemporary artists using photography. He has been widely acclaimed for his project The Atlas Group, in which Raad generated original ideas about the relationship between documentary photography, archive and history.

“In order to document and investigate Lebanon’s contemporary history, Raad developed innovative methods of approaching the imagery of war and the way political and social conflict can be explored in art. Through Raad’s work we are able to question the traditional iconography of war photography and speculate productively on visuality, memory and violence.”

This year’s awards committee was comprised of Sergio Mah (chair), curator and professor at Lisbon’s University Nova, Clément Chéroux, curator at the department of photography at Paris’ Center Pompidou, Charlotte Cotton, the creative director of the U.K.’s National Media Museum, Thomas Seelig, curator at Switzerland’s Fotomuseum Winterthur and Carol Squiers, curator at New York’s International Center of Photography.

As part of the prize, an exhibition of Raad’s work will open on Nov. 12, 2011 at Sweden’s Hasselblad Center at the Gothenburg Museum of Art. Raad will also conduct one or more seminars.


For more information see www.hasselbladfoundation.org

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