Dolf Henkes Award 2019 nominees announced

Roxette Capriles, Priscila Fernandes, Emma van der Leest, Evelyn Taocheng Wang
Exhibition opening: Thursday 13 December, 19:00
Exhibition: 14.12.2018 – 17.02.2019

Artists Roxette Capriles, Priscila Fernandes, Emma van der Leest, and Evelyn Taocheng Wang are the nominees for the Dolf Henkes Prize 2019. The Henkes Foundation biannually awards the prize to an iconic Rotterdam artist. The jury, led by Fons Hof, nominated the four artists for the €12,000 prize. From Friday 14 December 2018 to Sunday 17 February 2019, an exhibition of the nominees’ work takes place at TENT. The winner is announced on Thursday 7 February 2019, 18.00h at TENT during Art Rotterdam.

This year’s jury – Fons Hof (director Art Rotterdam), Ingrid Commandeur (art critic and researcher), Tirzo Martha (sculptor and performance artist), and Katarina Zdjelar (winner Dolf Henkes Prize 2016) – gave the following statement on the nomination: “Our selection was made from a large array of artists who are connected to the city of Rotterdam or Curaçao and sometimes to both. The dynamism and versatility were striking, and the jury’s choice reflects the wealth of different positions. Overlaps with design and science, youthful radicality of the image, unadorned social engagement, and self-discovery in a globalised world are all aspects of the contemporary art practices conveyed by this year’s Dolf Henkes Prize nominees.”

Roxette Capriles (Curaçao, 1993) graduated from the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam in 2016 and as an alumna of the IBB (Instituto Buena Bista, Curaçao Center for Contemporary Art) worked on the last two editions of the Kunsthal’s ‘All you can Art’ summer school project.

Priscila Fernandes (Portugal, 1981) has participated in several international exhibitions and currently coordinates the artist residencies at Het Wilde Weten in Rotterdam. Past exhibitions include at TENT, the São Paulo Biennial, the Reykjavik Art Museum, and Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona. In 2011 she received the Prix de Rome Basic Prize for Visual Arts.

Emma van der Leest (the Netherlands, 1991) is a bio-artist working with processes and organisms, such as bacteria, mushrooms, and cells in biotechnology. Van der Leest is the founder and creative director of BlueCity Lab, a biotechnology company and laboratory, located in the former Rotterdam swimming pool Tropicana, which experiments with dry and wet materials. In 2015, she graduated Cum Laude in Product Design from the Willem de Kooning Academy.

Evelyn Taocheng Wang (China, 1981) won the Volkskrant Contemporary Art Prize and the Dorothea von Stetten Art Award in Germany, both in 2016. In her series ‘Massage Near Me’, she shared her experiences of working at a Chinese massage parlour in Amsterdam’s Red Light District. Wang was trained in traditional Chinese painting and studied art at the Städelschule in Frankfurt and De Ateliers in Amsterdam.

8th edition Dolf Henkes Prize
Roelof Lucas Johannes (Dolf) Henkes (Rotterdam, 1903–1989) was a Dutch painter who lived and worked in Katendrecht, Rotterdam. At Henkes’ behest, he wanted part of his estate to go to artists who are as iconic to the city of Rotterdam as the prize’s namesake. Since 2004, on the initiative of the Henkes Foundation, the Dolf Henkes Prize has been awarded to visual artists who put art from Rotterdam in the spotlight. Respected and internationally oriented previous winners are Jeroen Eisinga, Erik van Lieshout, Melvin Moti, Lara Almarcegui, Gyz La Rivière, Lidwien van de Ven, and Katarina Zdjelar. In his work, Henkes chose motifs from the world around him: the people and the port, portraits, still lifes, landscapes, the devastation of the port of Rotterdam and nude studies; he also fulfilled some twenty monumental assignments. Eisinga, the first-ever winner from 2004, said: “Winning this prize was a remarkable turning point for me. It gave my self-confidence a huge boost, and since then my career has continued in an upward trajectory.”

Dolf Henkes on Curaçao
At the end of 1945, Rotterdam artist Dolf Henkes boarded a boat to Curaçao. After the dark war years at home, everything on the island would make a deep impression on him: the colours, the light, the everyday life. He managed to translate the archetypal features and themes of the island into a very personal and modern visual language. The island became close to his heart and had a lasting impact on his work. From 25 September 2018, more than 30 paintings by Dolf Henkes will be on show at three different venues in Curaçao. The Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands, Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, and various private collections have lent these works. The presentations offer a unique opportunity to get further acquainted with the work of Dolf Henkes. The exhibitions run until January 12, 2019. For more information: www.dolfhenkes.com/Curacao and info@dolfhenkes.com.

The Dolf Henkes Prize is an initiative of the Henkes Foundation. The foundation’s objectives include the promotion of a favourable climate for art in Rotterdam. The Dolf Henkes Prize 2019 is made possible by the Henkes Foundation, the National Cultural Heritage Agency, Stichting Stokroos and TENT, a department of the CBK Rotterdam.

Note to editors, not for publication: For more information and/or interviews, please contact Aletta van der Eijk via aletta@tentrotterdam.nl or +31 6 33 16 49 08.