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Billionaire Victor Pinchuk unveils shortlist for $100,000 Future Generation Art Prize

7 December 2016

Twenty-one artists have been shortlisted from more than 4,000 entrants for the fourth Future Generation Art Prize, the award established in 2009 by the Ukrainian billionaire and philanthropist Victor Pinchuk for artists under 35 worldwide. The winner, to be announced at a ceremony in Kiev in March, will receive $100,000 ($60,000 in cash and a $40,000 production budget to make a new work).

Works by the nominees will go on show at the Pinchuk Art Centre in Kiev (25 February-16 April 2017), and at the Palazzo Contarini Polignac during the Venice Biennale (11 May-13 August 2017). “We intend to bring all 21 artists to Venice as we did with previous editions. The idea of the prize has always been to support not just the winner of the main prize but all nominated artists as strongly as possible,” says Bjorn Geldhof, the artistic director of the Pinchuk Art Centre.

Five US-based artists are on the shortlist, including the Nigerian-born Njideka Akunyili Crosby, whose collaged self-portrait Drown (2012) sold for $1.1m (with fees) at Sotheby’s in New York last week, more than three times its high estimate. The youngest nominee is the 25-year-old British artist Rebecca Moss, who was stranded at sea in September during her residency on the Hanjin Geneva container ship, after the operating company filed for bankruptcy. 

The Open Group, a Ukrainian collective, were automatically shortlisted after winning the Pinchuk Art Centre Prize, a $10,000 award for young Ukrainian artists, last year. “The [Future Generation Art] prize has given Ukrainian artists both visibility and access to their peers worldwide,” Geldhof says.

The 2017 jury includes Iwona Blazwick, the director of the Whitechapel Gallery in London, and Nicholas Baume, the director of the Public Art Fund in New York and the curator of this year’s Public sector of Art Basel in Miami Beach, which opens on 30 November.