Tracey Snelling Awarded 2020 Foundwork Art Prize

by Noëlle BuAbbud // Dec. 16, 2020

Berlin-based artist Tracey Snelling has been awarded the second annual 2020 Foundwork Artist Prize. Snelling’s works in installation, sculpture, video, sound and performance construct textured environments of real-imagined locations, stories of the inhabitants interwoven throughout. These collaged, cinematic spaces are layered impressions of the human condition in relation to varied sites and experiences, made up of meticulous multi-sensory details that overwhelm and engross the viewer. Snelling draws her audience into a voyeuristic relation, peering through windows, playing on our base psychological inclination to be ever-curious about the social, intimate lives of others.

two men wrestling on a bed in a messy room

Tracey Snelling: ‘Men Wrestling,’ 2018, part of ‘Bedroom, Living Room performances,’ Life-sized installation with performance by Ron Helbig and Christopher Adams-Cohen // Courtesy of Tracey Snelling

Her process is a kind of sociological exploration of environments, where she collects exacting details in order to restructure atmospheric essences of places as three-dimensional, non-linear sculptural films. Snelling’s approach allows for a resonant speculation on lives and identities in relation to various localities, resulting in a vibrant, haptic approach to storytelling. Snelling has had solo exhibitions at The Institute for Endotic Research (TIER), Berlin; the Swatch Pavilion of the Arsenale, 2019 Venice Biennale; Cokkie Snoei Gallery, Rotterdam; Aeroplastics Contemporary, Brussels; and Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts, Grand Rapids.

model of Kotti building in Berlin, lights flickering and mini lcd screens play in windows

Tracey Snelling: ‘Kotti,’ 2019, Wood, paint, images, lcd screens, electroluminescent wire, media players, speakers, lights, transformers, 28x48x35 in // Courtesy of Tracey Snelling

Snelling, along with three short-listed artists, will be a part of Foundwork’s ongoing ‘Dialogues’ program of artist interviews. Foundwork’s 2020 Short List includes Mexico City-based sculptor and performance artist Melanie McLain; Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary artist Joiri Minaya; and Bellingham, Washington-based painter Andrea Joyce Heimer.

Painting by Andrea Joyce Heimer, flat perspective, eagles descending while chaos ensues, people vomiting, a car crash

Andrea Joyce Heimer: ‘A Couple Of Seconds Before The Thing Happened That Summer, Somewhere Near Alder Street,’ 2020, Acrylic on panel, 36 x 48 in. // Courtesy of Andrea Joyce Heimer

The artists were selected by this year’s jury panel of distinguished international curators, artists and gallerists: Rachel Adams, Chief Curator and Director of Programs, Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts; Anat Ebgi, Owner and Director, Anat Ebgi Gallery; Natasha Ginwala, Artistic Director, 13th Gwangju Biennale, Associate Curator, Gropius Bau; Kalup Linzy, performance and video artist; Humberto Moro, Deputy Director and Senior Curator, Museo Tamayo, Adjunct Curator, SCAD Museum of Art; and Michael Ruiz, Founder and Managing Director, Future Gallery.

a human lays in a floral body suit contrasting with pink hydrangeas in the background

Joiri Minaya: ‘Container #4,’ 2020, Archival pigment print, 40 x 60 in. // Courtesy of Joiri Minaya

New York–based Foundwork is a digital platform for artists to introduce their work to people across the global contemporary art field. The platform encourages visibility and connection between artists, curators and collaborators, wherever they are based. Foundwork hosts programs including their Guest Curators program, ‘Dialogues’ interview series and the Foundwork Artist Prize.

Artist Info

two women, one sitting, one standing, hold a tiled wall piece together

Melanie McLain: ‘Wall Compressions’, 2020, Ceramic tile, wood, silicone, fabric, high density foam, plaster and zippers, 53x14x32 in. // Courtesy of Melanie McLain

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