Venice Biennale 2024

Prizes for New Zealand and Australia

Australia wins the Golden Lion for the best pavilion, the Mataaho Collective from New Zealand the one for the main exhibition: the awards fit in with the Biennale's concept of giving indigenous art the attention it deserves.

April 22, 2024
Venice Biennale
Photo: Andrea Avezzu
Archie Moore accepts the Golden Lion.

Many pavilions were shortlisted for the Golden Lion this year, including the German, French and US pavilions. This is the first time in the long history of US pavilions that an indigenous artist has been solely responsible for the creation of a pavilion with Jeffrey Gibson. The prize was won by Australia. Archie Moore created a subtle installation that includes murals on the walls and ceiling. It is a family tree that starts with Moore's family and eventually connects to animals, plants and mystical ancestors. The Australian pavilion is a memorial to the oppression and mistreatment of indigenous people in Australia, an opportunity to reflect on the past, present and future, as the artist says. The Golden Lion for the best contribution in the main exhibition went to the Mataaho Collective, made up of four Māori women. The New Zealand artists took the design of traditional birth mats as their starting point and created a pavilion that combines architecture, craftsmanship and sculpture to create a womb-like space: tradition is adapted for contemporary life and at the same time promises protection.

The Silver Lion for a Promising Artist went to Nigerian video artist Karimah Ashadu (*1985), who lives in Lagos and Hamburg. Her intimate video portrait of young men from the agricultural north of Nigeria, who are looking for a better future in Lagos and drive illegal motorcycle cabs out of necessity, convinced the jury. Special mentions went to the pavilion of the Republic of Kosovo and the artists Samia Halaby (*1936) from Palestine and La Chola Poblete (*1989) from Argentina.Art.Salon

Mataaho Collective
Photo: Andrea Avezzu
Three out of four members of the Mataaho Collective with the Golden Lion.

Dive deeper into the art world

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May 20, 2024
Vienna, Franz Grabmayr in the ALBERTINA Museum

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May 17, 2024