Congratulations to Ramona Zoladek, who has just been announced by Shezad Dawood as the winner of the Elephant x Griffin Art Prize 2018. The judges selected from a shortlist of eleven emerging artists, who each brought something different to the table, whether that be a sense of fun, an exploration of history or a challenge to tradition. You can see all eleven shortlisters in a new group show at Elephant West.

The Winner

“By deliberately creating recipes that mix organic and construction materials I introduce fragility within my works,” says Zoladek of her sculptural practice, which includes live elements with plant life emerging through cracks and crevices in the work. “The qualities of strength and weakness play out in the physical nature of the pieces. The instability inherent in the work disrupts the architectural forms to create new configurations and often sets up a quiet duel between nature and urban construction. This re-enactment generates sculpture that is at once bold and tentative, layering political threads within an intensely personal and physical practice.”

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Judges’ Feedback

Shezad Dawood, artist: “We gave her the prize because we felt she turned a really fragile ecosystem into a really bold and confident sculptural intervention.”

Robert Shore, creative director at Elephant: “Great conceptual confidence + compelling material fragility + total control in execution = absolutely irresistible.”

Becca Pelly-Fry, head curator at Elephant West: “Ramona’s work is both beautiful and conceptually rich, and the pieces she has installed at Elephant West have a particular power to them. The symbiotic relationship between the artist and the chickpeas which activate the work feels reflective of major global issues as well as being intensely personal and poetic.”

The Shortlist

Naomi Avsec
Gabriela Giroletti
Ana Clara Goncalves Dias
Felicity Hammond
Realf Heygate
Catherine Howell
Kyung Hwa Shon
Gwenllian Spink
Louisa Stylianidi
Marianne Thoermer
Ramona Zoladek

The Prize

This year marks the first time Elephant has supported an art prize. But the competition itself, formerly known just as the Griffin Art Prize, has been in existence for six years and enjoys a reputation as the premier prize for recent graduates. On winning the prize, Zoladek receives a £5,000 cash stipend, £2,000 of studio rent within 2019 at a location of choice within the UK, £3,000 RRP value of art materials from fine art brands (Winsor & Newton, Liquitex and Conté à Paris) and professional support and mentoring programme from the Elephant team. Come down to Elephant West before 13 January to see all the shortlisted artists’ work.

 

Elephant x Griffin Shortlist Exhibition

From 7 December to 13 January 2019 at Elephant West, London

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