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  • Jul 03, 2019

Hiwa K Wins Hector Prize 2019

HIWA K, winner of the 2019 Hector Prize, will present a solo exhibition at the Kunsthalle Mannheim, opening July 4. Photo by Heiko Daniels. Courtesy Kunsthalle Mannheim.

Kunsthalle Mannheim has announced that Hiwa K, recipient of the 2019 Hector Prize, will be unveiling an exhibition of his works at the Kunsthalle on July 4. The German platform, which administers the triennial Hector Prize in association with the HW & J. Hector Foundation, named the sculptor and installation artist winner of the award in January. He was selected from a shortlist of 14 contending artists and collectives, and was awarded a cash prize of USD 22,600, in addition to the opportunity to present a show at the Kunsthalle.  

Born in Iraqi Kurdistan, Hiwa K fled to Germany at the age of 25. His multimedia works are deeply influenced by his own experiences of migration. His practice interrogates topics such as globalization, nationalism, identity, and geopolitics, while foregrounding the vernacular knowledge of various communities. Ulrike Lorenz, director of the Kunsthalle, praised the artist’s engagement with societal issues. “It is this form of confrontation that the new Kunsthalle is seeking—a getting-involved and will-to-permeate society,” Lorenz said.

Hiwa K’s upcoming exhibition will feature the video installation The Bell Project (2014/15), which includes a bronze bell cast by an old Italian foundry, using metal debris found in Iraq’s warzones. This Lemon Tastes of Apple and Do You Remember What You Are Burning? (both 2011), videos centered on public protests, will also be on view. The newest work in the line-up is Alchemy of Love (2019), created specifically for the Hector Prize exhibition. The project consists of a carpet showing an aerial photograph of war-torn Mannheim. The show will be on view until September 1.

The Hector Prize was founded in 1997 with the goal to support Germany-based artists who produce three-dimensional works, and who are aged between 35 and 50. Previous recipients include Nairy Baghramian, Gunda Förster, Alicja Kwade, Tobias Rehberger, and Florian Slotawa.

Evelyn Goh is an editorial intern of ArtAsiaPacific.

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