It was announced today that the fifth ABN AMRO Art Prize has been won by Melvin Moti (Rotterdam, 1977).
The judges of the ABN AMRO Art Prize selected Melvin Moti as an extraordinary artist who pursues his own ideas, with the utmost focus and composure, and addresses themes that touch on the essence of our existence. Important topics in his work include time, history, memory, mental experimentation and phenomena that fall beyond the framework of human observation. The judges consider Moti to be one of the most unconventional and talented Dutch artists of his generation, and are delighted to award him the ABN AMRO Art Prize 2015. Moti’s solo exhibition will be on display in the Hermitage Amsterdam in the autumn of 2015 (opening on 25 November).
The judges looked for an outspoken and talented artist in the Netherlands who is developing in an interesting direction and to whom the prize offers an important boost toward the next stages of his or her career. The leading criteria were the quality and uniqueness of the artist’s work. Moti is an extraordinary talent in the making. Although the artist has exhibited his work in leading galleries in the Netherlands and in particular abroad, at present his work is relatively unknown to the general Dutch public.
On each of the four previous occasions that the ABN AMRO Art Prize was awarded, it was to international talent in the Netherlands: Fahrettin Örenli (2004), Eylem Aladogan (2005), Ryan Gander (2006) and Melissa Gordon (2007). This year, 2015, is the fifth time that ABN AMRO Art Prize has been handed out. In its renewed form, the prize is awarded as an incentive for talent in the Netherlands (whether Dutch or international). The prize includes an opportunity for the winner to exhibit in the Hermitage in Amsterdam, with an accompanying publication, and a sum of €10,000. In addition, ABN AMRO purchases some of the artist’s work for its own art collection.
The panel of judges for the ABN AMRO Art Prize 2015 was made up of Maria Barnas (writer, poet and graphic artist), Lorenzo Benedetti (director of De Appel Arts Centre in Amsterdam), Lex ter Braak (director of the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht), Danila Cahen (curator of ABN AMRO’s art collection) and Bart Rutten (Head of Collections, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam).
Documentation and research play a central role in Moti’s films, objects and installations. Moti researches notions of time, history and memory, and queries issues such as the power of human imagination and how perception works. Earlier works included of a guided tour, from memory, through the empty rooms of the Hermitage (No Show, 2004), the human ability to make images appear on the retina from total darkness (The Prisoner’s Cinema, 2008) and giving visibility to the invisible – in this case the fourth dimension (The Eightfold Dot, 2013).
Melvin Moti (Rotterdam, 1977) studied at the Academy for Art Education in Tilburg, with further training at De Ateliers in Amsterdam (1999-2001). He has had a number of solo exhibitions in recent years, including in the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo (2014), the Contemporary Art Centre in Vilnius (2014), Wiels in Brussels (2010) and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam (2008). In 2013 Moti was one of the artists who took part in the international group exhibition The Encyclopedic Palace at the 55th Bienniale in Venice.