Dafe Oboro, Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński win 2022 ART X Prize

Dafe and Belinda

Dafe Oboro and Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński wins 2023 Access Bank Art X Prize. Oboro emerged as the winner of the Nigeria Award and Belinda emerged as the winner of the Africa/Diaspora Award. The prize which attracted thousands of applications and was keenly contested by African artists from Africa and the Diaspora was presented at a press conference on Friday, 25th November at the Access Tower in Lagos.

The pair were adjudged winners out of 10 selected finalists — five from Africa/the Diaspora and the other five from Nigeria. The finalists were, for Nigeria Award: Kingsley Ayogu, Matthew Eguavoen, Neec Nonso, Tolulope Ami-Williams and Dafe Oboro; for Africa / Diaspora Award; Lois Arde-Acquah (Ghana), Louisa Marajo (France/Martinique), Mallory Lowe Mpoka (Canada), Yetunde Olagbaju (United States) and Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński (Vienna-based).

The two winners will receive a $10,000 grant each towards exhibitions at ART X Lagos in 2023; a three-month residency at Gasworks, London (for the Nigeria winner) and Yinka Shonibare’s G.A.S. Foundation, Lagos (for the Africa/Diaspora winner) as well as a mentoring, support and cultural exchange opportunities.

The year’s edition of the ART X Prize was adjudicated by an international jury which included Professor Peju Layiwola, artist, art historian and writer; Victor Ehikhamenor, multimedia artist, writer and Founder of Angels and Muse; Dr Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, Founder and Artistic Director of SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin and Sonsbeek 20–24; Maria Varnava, Founder and Director of Tiwani Contemporary; Gabi Ngcobo, artist, educator and Curatorial Director of the Javett Art Center at the University of Pretoria (Javett-UP); and Alessio Antoniolli, Director of Gasworks & Triangle Network, London.

The Founder/CEO of ART X, Tokini Peterside-Schwebig, said: “We are delighted to present this prized opportunity to these two exceptional artists – Dafe and Belinda – who are unique in their perspectives but are united in their ambition to shift narratives about Africa and its global Diaspora. Our shared objective with Access Corporation, through this Prize, is to reinforce emerging artists at this pivotal stage in their careers, and we aspire over time to build a core group of artists for Nigeria, Africa and the Diaspora, with the potential to become truly transformational, not just within the arts ecosystem, but within our broader communities at a social, national, continental and global level. We look forward to working closely with these artists on their development in the coming months, and anticipate that they will make the most of this opportunity, which culminates in their exhibitions at ART X Lagos 2023.”

Speaking on behalf of Access Bank, the Head of Marketing Communications, Chioma Afe said Access bank has funded the prize for seven years running, adding that the sustained interest is to bring out the best in the artists, empower them to tell the African story and to put a smile on the faces of the young artists, who are acting as our cultural ambassadors.

ABOUT DAFE OBORO

Dafe Oboro (born in 1994) works predominantly in photography and film. Drawing motifs from fashion and popular culture, he uses evocative sound and imagery to contemplate questions of masculinity, movement across time and space, and the socio-political state of contemporary Nigeria and Africa.

A recipient of the 2020 Film Prize at the Future Awards Africa, and a 2020 nominee for Dazed Magazine’s100 list of people shaping youth culture. Oboro’s film work has been screened at various venues and festivals in London (V&A Museum – Friday Late and London Short Film Festival, 2021); Lagos (ART X Live! 2019); Milan (Fashion Film Festival Milano, 2019); Eindhoven (Dutch Design Week, 2019); and Edinburgh (Africa in Motion, 2019).

ABOUT BELINDA KAZEEM-KAMIŃSKI

Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński (born 1980) is a Vienna-based writer, artist, and researcher, whose works manifest themselves through a variety of media. Rooted in Black feminist theory, she has developed a research-based and process-oriented investigative practice that deals with the condition of Black life in the African diaspora.

She interlaces with varying spaces and temporalities, thereby resisting a clean-cut separation between documentary and speculation.

Her solo and group exhibitions include: Seven Scenes, Camera Austria Graz (3.9.-20.11.2022), If A Tree Falls In A Forest (2022), Les Recontres d’Arles, Emplotment (2022), Museum Ludwig Budapest, KAS (2022), Centrale Fies, Solo-Exhibition Kunsthalle Wien (2021), The World Is White No Longer. Ansichten einer dezentrierten Welt (2021), Museum der Moderne Salzburg.

Her screenings include: The International Film Festival Rotterdam, Diagonale, Vancouver International Film Festival e.g. Her awards and prizes include: Camera Austria Award (2021), Doc-Grant Austrian Academy of Science (2018-2020), Cathrin Pichler Prize (2018).

ABOUT ART X PRIZE 

The Prize awards early-career artists from Africa and its Diaspora with opportunities to develop their practices, with the intention of setting them up for the highest levels of success on the global stage. 

The Prize, formerly open only to emerging Nigerian artists, has evolved to include an additional award that is open to emerging artists from all of Africa and its Diaspora, in a bid to buttress sustainable careers for a wider range of artists.

Previous winners are Chigozie Obi (2021), Etinosa Yvonne (2019), Bolatito Aderemi-Ibitola (2018), Habeeb Andu (2017), and Patrick Akpojotor (2016).

The ART X Prize is sponsored by Access Corporation, the parent company of Access Bank.

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