Anna Boghiguian receives the Wolfgang Hahn Prize 2024

Thursday, September 28, 2023
 Anna Boghiguian receives the Wolfgang Hahn Prize 2024

Anna Boghiguian (born 1946 in Cairo) will be awarded the 30th Wolfgang Hahn Prize of the Gesellschaft für Moderne Kunst at Museum Ludwig. The award ceremony will take place in November 2024 during Art Cologne 2024.

The Egyptian-Canadian artist of Armenian origin has presented one of the most exciting positions in contemporary art since her participation in the Biennials of Istanbul in 2009 and of Sharjah in 2011 and in dOCUMENTA 13 in 2012. She is known for her figurative murals, (note)books, drawings, paintings, photographs, and sculptures, as well as some spectacular large-scale installations. Boghiguian's work is often spontaneous and frequently created on location. She is considered a perceptive observer of the human condition and conveys an interpretation of contemporary life in which her content oscillates extremely cleverly between past and present, poetry and politics, history and literature. Her artworks celebrate a globally united humanity and focus on the aftermath of historical events and their conflicts in order to identify options for the future through an artistic reappraisal.
Through a combination of verbal and visual forms of representation, her works have an immediate and emotional effect. Thematically, they combine the artist's profound historical knowledge with her awareness for current debates, although in their execution they seem like an antithesis to the optics of a technologized digital world. Boghiguian's unique artistic position in expression and emotionality has not yet received the attention in Germany that her authentic expressiveness deserves.
Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, guest juror, explains about the nomination of Anna Boghiguian: “Her work’s poetry and uniqueness as well as her directness and expressivity fit ideally into the Museum Ludwig’s collection with its strong expressionist positions. Anna Boghiguian has been widely recognized internationally only recently, over the last ten years, so that this award is for a highly topical artist, rather than for a lifetime achievement. She is totally contemporary in her themes and in the connections she draws through her readings, travels and internet searches, between historical stories and political and aesthetic discussions of our present world.”
"I am extremely pleased that Anna Boghiguian will receive the Wolfgang Hahn Prize 2024. With her, an artist is honored whose work is equally political and poetic. Moreover, in her figurative installations, manifold relationships can be established with 20th century painting in the Museum Ludwig. If she were to make a new work for the museum, following her fundamental artistic practice, this would be extremely gratifying and exciting," explains Yilmaz Dziewior, Director of the Museum Ludwig.
Mayen Beckmann, Chairwoman of the Gesellschaft für Moderne Kunst, adds: "Anna Boghiguian is an artist who, with great freshness and internationality, finds images that respond to our contemporary problems and events and reflect on the human condition based on precise historical knowledge. Like a nomad, she moves from exhibition to biennial, using the most humble materials, often found on site, to make her ideas visible in different media. This results in the most vivid drawings and expansive, text-layered installations. In these, she reveals her concerns, which ultimately make all of our concerns and conditionalities visible in an almost shamanic way."
As a daughter of an Armenian watchmaker, Anna Boghiguian studied political science and economics at the American University in Cairo in the 1960s. In the early 1970s, she moved to Canada and studied art and music in Montreal. She has travelled all her life and maintains a cosmopolitan culture. Boghiguian has her studio and residence in Cairo, but also lives and works in Europe, Asia, Africa and America. Winner of the Golden Lion for Best Pavilion (Armenia) at the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015, she also participated in the touring exhibition "Contemporary Arab Representation" in 2003, the 11th and 14th Istanbul Biennale in 2009 and 2015, the Sao Paolo Biennale in 2014 and 2023, and has received solo exhibitions at the Castello di Rivoli in Turin, Kunsthaus Bregenz, Museum für Gegenwartskunst Siegen and SMAK in Ghent, among others.

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