Make a big difference to The Big Idea.

Help us tell the most creative stories.

Become a supporter

Ruth Buchanan wins Walters Prize 2018

Ruth Buchanan, BAD VISUAL SYSTEMS, 2016/2018, (installation view), mixed media, dimensions and durations variable
Ruth Buchanan has been announced as the winner of the Walters Prize 2018, New Zealand’s most prestigious contemporary art award.

Share

Ruth Buchanan has been announced as the winner of the Walters Prize 2018, New Zealand’s most prestigious contemporary art award.

The announcement was made by Adriano Pedrosa, the Walters Prize 2018 international judge, at a dinner at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki last Friday. Buchanan is awarded $50,000 for the honour.

Buchanan was selected for her presentation of BAD VISUAL SYSTEMS, 2016/2018, a mixed media installation.

Pedrosa, Artistic Director of Brazil’s São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP) says: ‘The many layers of Ruth Buchanan’s installation BAD VISUAL SYSTEMS, 2016/2018, provide a distinct polyphonic quality to the exhibition, at times poetically verging on the cacophonic.’

‘From sculpture to architecture, painting to design, performance to audio, manifesto to poetry, Buchanan brings together politics, feminism and the body, arranged in a processual, open and speculative way. It takes into account competing, overlapping and contradictory modes of representation, both visual and verbal, aural and spatial.’

BAD VISUAL SYSTEMS is a tour de force of language itself, not so much framed as an efficient means of communication, but as a fantasy of “bad visual systems.”’

Pedrosa made his selection from four exhibited works by artists Ruth Buchanan (b.1980), Jacqueline Fraser (b.1956), Jess Johnson (b.1979) and Simon Ward (b.1977), and Pati Solomona Tyrell (b.1992).

Pedrosa says of the Walters Prize 2018 exhibition: ‘It is an exceptional opportunity to view four outstanding works with a focus and intensity not often available. All of the artists have presented complex works, of the highest standard.’

Buchanan joins a celebrated list of former Walters Prize winners: contemporary New Zealand artists Shannon Te Ao (2016), Luke Willis Thompson (2014), Kate Newby (2012), Dan Arps (2010), Peter Robinson (2008), Francis Upritchard (2006), et al. (2004) and Yvonne Todd (2002).

The Walters Prize recognises outstanding works of contemporary New Zealand art produced and exhibited during the past two years.

Held biennially, the Walters Prize aims to make contemporary art a more widely recognised and debated feature of cultural life. Named in honour of the late New Zealand artist Gordon Walters, the Prize was established in 2002 by Founding Benefactors and Principal Donors Erika and Robin Congreve and Dame Jenny Gibbs, working together with Auckland Art Gallery.

Further information: 

The Walters Prize 2018 Exhibition

Sat 18 Aug 2018 — Mon 28 Jan 2019
Open daily, except Christmas Day 10am–5pm
Free for New Zealand residents

New Zealand's contemporary art award, the Walters Prize returns to the Gallery in 2018 for its ninth iteration.

Named in honour of pioneering modernist painter Gordon Walters (1919–1995), the Walters Prize is awarded for an outstanding work of contemporary New Zealand art produced and exhibited during the past two years. The biennial Prize aims to make contemporary art a more widely recognised and debated feature of cultural life.

Contact details: 
Samantha McKegg, Communications Officer, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki | M +64 21 548 480 | E samantha.mckegg@aucklandartgallery.com

Written by

Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki

7 Nov 2018

Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki Art, history and culture are brought to life at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. Founded in 1888, the Gallery remains New Zealand’s largest visual arts experience, with a collection of more than 16,000 artworks.