Hugo Boss Prize Winner



Exhibition of the Artist’s Work Presented at the Guggenheim in Early 2005

NEW YORK, NY—November 9, 2004—Thomas Krens, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, and Dr. Bruno Sälzer, Chairman and CEO, HUGO BOSS AG, today announced that Rirkrit Tiravanija has been named the winner of the HUGO BOSS PRIZE 2004. Established in 1996 to recognize significant achievement in contemporary art, the HUGO BOSS PRIZE is a biennial award administered by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and presided over by an international jury of museum curators and directors. Tiravanija was selected from a group of seven short-listed artists and will be awarded $50,000 as prizewinner. Additionally, an exhibition of the artist's work will be on view at the Guggenheim Museum during the spring of 2005.

"HUGO BOSS and the Guggenheim Museum are very proud to announce the winner of the fifth HUGO BOSS PRIZE," said Dr. Bruno Sälzer, Chairman and CEO of HUGO BOSS. "This award once again underlines our continuing commitment to the arts. We would like to extend our congratulations to the fascinating winner, Rirkrit Tiravanija, and our thanks to the jury for its outstanding work."

Tiravanija was selected from a shortlist of finalists announced last February which includes Franz Ackermann (Germany), Rivane Neuenschwander (Brazil), Jeroen de Rijke and Willem de Rooij (Netherlands), Simon Starling (UK), and Yang Fudong (China).

According to the HUGO BOSS PRIZE criteria, the award is given to an artist whose work represents a significant development in contemporary art. The prize sets no restrictions in terms of age, gender, race, nationality, or media, and the nominations may include young, emerging artists as well as established individuals whose public recognition may be long overdue.

The jurors for HUGO BOSS PRIZE 2004 are: Daniel Birnbaum, Rector of the Städelschule Art Academy and Director of the Portikus Gallery, both in Frankfurt am Main; Susan Cross, Associate Curator, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; Thomas Krens, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation; Adriano Pedrosa, Curator, inSITE 2005, San Diego/Tijuana; Beatrix Ruf, Director, Kunsthalle Zürich; and Joan Young, Associate Curator, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. In their statement, the jurors describe their selection:

Rirkrit Tiravanija emerged as a key figure during the 1990s, introducing a new paradigm of interactivity that has redefined the direction of much recent contemporary art. His ever-expanding notion of what constitutes a work of art, his generous inclusion of the viewer in experiential situations, and his aesthetics of use have been deeply influential on today's art practices. Bridging art and life, Tiravanija's projects have involved cooking and serving food, creating environments in which people may engage in an array of leisure activities, and pursuing collaborative endeavors with fellow artists and students. Tiravanija's work cannot be reduced to the individual object. Rather, it is characterized by social interaction and the dialogue between artist and audience. In recent years, Tiravanija has broadened his artistic practice to include exhibition curating; he was part of the collaborative team responsible for Utopia Station, a cornerstone of the 2003 Venice Biennale. He is also a founder of The Land, an ongoing, collaborative, environmental reclamation project in Thailand. Global in outlook yet local in practice, his works translate from culture to culture with remarkable ease, welcoming the regional traditions brought to the work by the context in which it is presented. We found this sense of intercultural exchange to be a critical component of Tiravanija's practice and one of the defining criteria for awarding him the 2004 Hugo Boss Prize.

Rirkrit Tiravanija was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1961, and is based today in New York, Berlin, and Thailand. After high school in Bangkok, he studied at the Ontario College of Art, Toronto; the Banff Center School of Fine Arts, Banff, Canada; The School of the Art Institute of Chicago; and the Independent Study Program, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Tiravanija's installations and actions provide platforms for artistic, public, and private activities—effectively blurring the boundaries that customarily separate them. His projects invite the public to enter into and literally engage with his work; in fact, the active participation of the viewer is necessary for the work to be fully realized. Tiravanija has exhibited widely at museums and galleries throughout the world. He has had solo exhibitions at such institutions as The Museum of Modern Art, New York, Projects 58 (1997); Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zürich (1998); Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio (1998–99); Portikus, Frankfurt (2001); Secession, Vienna (2002); Galerie für Zeitgenossiche Kunst, Leipzig (2003); Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, UK (2003–04); and Chiang Mai University Art Museum, Thailand (2004). Tiravanija's installation Untitled 2002 (he promised) was recently exhibited in New York, under the auspices of the Guggenheim Museum, in October 2004. Retrospectives of Tiravanija's work will open at the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam, on December 4, and at the Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris/ARC at the Couvent des Cordeliers, Paris, on December 16, 2004.

Notable group exhibitions featuring Tiravanija's work include Aperto, 45th International Art Exhibition, Venice Biennale (1993); L'Hiver de l'Amour, Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris and P.S.1, Long Island City, New York (1994); Carnegie International 1995, The Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh (1995); 1995 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (1995); Traffic, CAPC Musée d'Art Contemporain, Bordeaux (1996); Manifesta 1, Rotterdam (1996); Skulptur Projekte in Mänster, Westfälische Landesmuseum and city of Mänster (1997); Cities on the Move, Secession, Vienna (1997–98); Berlin Biennale (1998); dAPERTutto, 48th International Art Exhibition, Venice Biennale (1999); Egofrugal, 7th International Istanbul Biennial (2001); YOKOHAMA 2001: International Triennale of Contemporary Art, Yokohama (2001); and No Ghost Just a Shell, Kunsthalle Zärich (2002). For the 50th International Venice Biennale (2003), Tiravanija co-curated Utopia Station, a version of which has recently opened at Haus der Kunst, Munich. Since 1998, Tiravanija has also been working on The Land, an on-going, collaborative, environmental reclamation project in Thailand. He has been awarded a Gordon Matta Clark Foundation Award, a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Biennial Competition Award, a National Endowment for the Arts/Visual Arts, Visual Artist Fellowship, the CENTRAL Art Prize from Central Krankenversicherung AG Cologne, in collaboration with the Kölnischer Kunstverein, in 1996, the Lucelia Artist Award from the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2003, and the Benesse Prize, granted by Benesse Art Site Naoshima, Japan, to an artist participating in the Venice Biennale, in 2003. Tiravanija is currently Associate Professor of Professional Practice, Faculty of the Arts, at Columbia University, New York.

In conjunction with the 2004 HUGO BOSS PRIZE, the Guggenheim has published a catalogue that features the work of all of the finalists, including special projects by each artist. The catalogue, designed by Sagmeister Inc., includes essays by Marcella Beccaria, Rosa Martinez, Francis McKee, Molly Nesbit, Hans-Ulrich Obrist, and Jan Tumlir, with an introduction by Joan Young. The catalogue is available for $19.95.

This year marks the fifth presentation of the HUGO BOSS PRIZE at the Guggenheim Museum. Since its inception in 1996, the prize has been awarded to American artist Matthew Barney (1996), Scottish artist Douglas Gordon (1998), Slovenian artist Marjetica Potrc (2000), and French artist Pierre Huyghe (2002). Previous finalists have been: Laurie Anderson, Janine Antoni, Stan Douglas, Cai Guo Qiang, and Yasumasa Morimura in 1996; Huang Yong Ping, William Kentridge, Lee Bul, Pipilotti Rist, and Lorna Simpson in 1998; Vito Acconci, Maurizio Cattelan, Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset, Tom Friedman, Barry Le Va, and Tunga in 2000; and Francis Alÿs, Olafur Eliasson, Hachiya Kazuhiko, Koo Jeong-a, and Anri Sala in 2002.

Since 1995, HUGO BOSS has provided critical support to many of the Guggenheim Museum's programs and exhibitions. In addition to the HUGO BOSS PRIZE, the company has helped to make possible retrospectives of the work of artists Georg Baselitz, Ross Bleckner, Francesco Clemente, Ellsworth Kelly, Robert Rauschenberg, Matthew Barney, and James Rosenquist, as well as architect Frank Gehry.

November 9, 2004

Betsy Ennis / Jennifer Russo
Guggenheim Public Affairs
Tel: 212 423-3840

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