Last night to the accompaniment of much fanfare and celebrity attendance German conceptual “artist’s artist” Hans-Peter Feldmann won the Guggenheim’s Hugo Boss Prize, a biannual award that comes with a cool $100,000. Feldmann wasn’t the obvious choice for the prize; at 69, he is the oldest artist to receive an award usually bestowed upon emerging artists, whose previous winners have included Matthew Barney and Emily Jacir. [New York Times]
Hans-Peter Feldmann is an “artist’s artist” in part because of his lack of mainstream fame in the art world, but also because of his reserved work, quiet, conceptually austere pieces that often recycle pre-made images or objects into new wholes. He often creates artist books or multiples that play with the idea of reproducibility and comment on the relationship of the vernacular to the highbrow. Ken Johnson wrote of the artist in the New York Times that there is a “mercurial, mildly amusing poetry,” to the artist’s work. I’d go beyond that and say he subverts quietly, poking fun in a way less obtrusive and less egotistical than Gabriel Orozco. Feldmann is represented by 303 Gallery.
Other artists nominated for this year’s Hugo Boss Prize include Cao Fei, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Roman Ondak, Walid Raad, and Apichatpong Weerasethakul. A video featuring the artists’ work can be found here.