The Nissan Art Award is a biennial award presented to the emerging generation of Japanese artists to further their careers, enhance their presence in the international art world and create a social environment where people familiarize themselves with art. The award is intended to celebrate new developments in Japanese contemporary art and help provoke debate about visual art by promoting creative emerging artists. Through a prolonged commitment, the award can contribute towards outlining a history of Japanese contemporary art and artists, focusing particularly on their activities in the past two years. As a continuation of the award, Nissan Motor Corporation also adds the works of art to its collection for exhibiting internally and externally with the aim of providing a point of reference on Japanese contemporary art in the international art scene.
Not only the Grand Prix winners, for all of the previous two editions’ finalists the award has served as a steppingstone to appearances at major art festivals, exhibitions and fairs around the world as well as influential art publications. For example, one of the 2015 finalists, Takahiro Iwasaki, was selected to represent Japan at this May’s Venice Biennale, known as the Olympic Games of contemporary art.
At the end of December 2016, a panel of ten nominators each selected three candidate artists.
Comprising curators, researchers and members of non-profit art organizations, the varied panel members have followed the careers of Japanese artists in a global context.
Thereafter, from among the twenty five candidates, five finalists were chosen in the first selection round at the beginning of May in New York, USA by five globally renowned jury members.
The five finalists will each receive prize money of one million JPY as well as a further one million JPY to pay for the production of new works of art, which are included in an exhibition of the finalists’ work in September 2017.
The jury selects the Grand Prix winner based on the exhibition. An Audience Award will be given based on votes from the public. All winners will be announced at the invitation-only award ceremony and reception on September 27.
Finalists: 1 million yen
Grand Prix: A total value of 5 million yen (finalist prize money and an additional 2 million yen, as well as 3 months of overseas residency program at ISCP with expert counseling and subsidy for travel, living and research costs), plus a trophy
About International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP)
Founded in 1994 in New York, ISCP is highly regarded for the support it offers artists and their international activities. ISCP is renowned for its unique residency program that combines use of a studio facility with regular visits from curators, critics and gallerists, allowing artists to give presentations about their work directly to important figures in the art world.
Nissan Art Award 2017 Trophy
Following on from the 2015 edition, Keita Suzuki has once again designed the Nissan Art Award trophy. The trophy encloses blue flower petals that symbolize rarity, expressing the unique talents that the artist has. While the 2015 trophy was themed around the eternity of creation that continues unbroken from generation to generation, made in partnership with a traditional artisan using lacquer and gold leaf, the 2017 trophy employs the contemporary material of acrylic, processed in collaboration with Air Frame, a studio in Shizuoka whose work has attained the level of crafts. After a process of discussion between Suzuki and Nissan, a trophy was realize that fused traditional craftsmanship with innovative design.
Keita Suzuki (product designer):Born in Aichi Prefecture in 1982, Keita Suzuki graduated from Tama Art University in 2006. Following time at NEC Design and Iwasaki Design Studio, he founded PRODUCT DESIGN CENTER/THE in 2012. With a focus on product design, his international projects encompass everything from planning to engineering, and include home appliances, mobility products, furniture, everyday utensils, and art.
Arts Initiative Tokyo [AIT]
Twin Bldg. Daikanyama B-403, 30-8 Sarugaku-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0033 Japan
TEL:+81 (0)3-6277-5561 / FAX:+81 (0)3-3780-0266
About Arts Initiative Tokyo [AIT]
AIT was begun in 2001, with the idea that Tokyo lacked spaces in which to think about, learn and discuss art at the time. We aim to create a new alternative platform where artists, curators, critics, collectors, students, and a larger audience can access contemporary art through a range of programs and events in Tokyo and beyond.