This week the winners were announced for the Lumen Prize 2013, the global award for digital fine art, which raises money for Peace Direct.
This year’s prize entries featured over 700 works from 45 countries. “The range and quality of the work entered this year was simply incredible,” commented Lumen founder Carla Rapoport. “It was such a difficult choice for judges to make, but the winner is very worthy of the Prize.” Jury panel member and President of the Royal Cambrian Academy for Art, Ivor Davies, added: “It’s exciting to see so many new ideas from artists all over the world. Digital technologies are very stimulating for the art world and hold great promise for the future.”
The winner, chosen by an eminent panel of judges, is Apodemy by Greek artist Katerina Athanasopoulou. It is a short experimental art film on the theme of Emigration, created for an art installation in Athens in a park called Plato’s Academy where it is said the philosopher taught his students. Accepting her award, Katerina said: “After working in the dark for so long, winning the Lumen Prize is like coming into the light.”
Katerina added: “I thought it fitting to work with Plato’s hypothesis of the human soul as a birdcage, where knowledge is birds flying. I was fascinated by the ornithological term “Zugunruhe” which is the turbulent behaviour of birds about to migrate, whether free or caged. That image, of birds circling their cage nervously, trying to set off for a journey that will never be, moved me deeply. I decided to turn that inside out, with a ghost cage-bus circled and moved by a flock of birds, within a city fragmented, half finished and abandoned. As a Greek who migrated to London, I’m struck by all the unfinished buildings that have been left behind by the crisis, that look themselves like empty cages.”
There is also a People’s Choice Award selected from Lumen’s online gallery. This was won by Wilderness, created by Ginevra Boni with Photoshop and After Effects. Both works feature in an exhibition of the top 50 works from 22 countries, which will go on tour. They will be displayed at New York City’s NYIT Gallery 61 in November, Hong Kong’s The Space in February 2014, and London’s Chelsea School of Art and Design, in March 2014.
The Lumen Prize was set up in 2011 as the first international award for digital fine art. Entries are created digitally using software or apps with computers, tablets, or smartphones, including digital interactive performance, digital sculpture and glitch art. The Lumen Prize is a not-for-profit company that donates proceeds after costs to its partner charity, Peace Direct, which funds local peace-builders in conflict zones around the world. Its website is at www.lumenprize.com.