Swiss Grand Award for Art / Prix Meret Oppenheim 2022

Swiss Grand Award for Art / Prix Meret Oppenheim 2022

Swiss Art Awards

Caroline Bachmann, Jürg Conzett and Gianfranco Bronzini, Klodin Erb. Art direction: Martina Brassel. Photos: Lena Amuat.

April 7, 2022
Swiss Grand Award for Art / Prix Meret Oppenheim 2022
Swiss Art Awards 2022: June 13–19
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For the 22nd time, the Federal Office of Culture (FOC) is presenting the Swiss Grand Award for Art / Prix Meret Oppenheim to outstanding Swiss culture practitioners: In 2022 they are the artists Caroline Bachmann and Klodin Erb, as well as the civil engineers duo Jürg Conzett & Gianfranco Bronzini.

Caroline Bachmann
Painter Caroline Bachmann experiments with shifts in states and perceptions. She has undertaken long stays abroad, notably in Italy; her return to Switzerland in the early 2000s was marked by a ten-year collaboration with artist Stefan Banz. An important event of this collaboration is the creation of the Kunsthalle Marcel Duchamp Association in Cully and the organization of the Marcel Duchamp Symposium in 2009. For Caroline Bachmann, it was an opportunity to discover a group of early 20th-century American figurative painters. Through her conversation with them and their precise yet transcendent relationship with nature, she fashioned the synthetic and almost dreamlike pictorial language that characterizes her works. Organized according to the customary categories of painting, from landscape to portraits and still life, her works are as much homages to the infinite renewal of local landscapes as they are cosmic celebrations of the marriage of the elements. Her portraits of female artists or painters of the past are located within an art historical tradition, but they are also a kind of manifesto of painting that connects places, times and figures. Caroline Bachmann’s work thus becomes a vehicle conveying us to an unknown location, which may be past, present or future.

Jürg Conzett & Gianfranco Bronzini
Civil engineers Jürg Conzett and Gianfranco Bronzini are a reminder that the engineer’s craft is a part of our built culture. Together since 1994, they have had their own engineering consultancy in Chur since 1996. Conzett studied at the Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology in Lausanne and Zurich; Bronzini completed an apprenticeship as a civil engineering draughtsman before studying at the Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences OST. Their designs are the product of an intensive thought process; with their strategic tactic, they always opt to find the solution that is most intelligent, both technologically and aesthetically. Among their projects, there are the Negrelli footbridge over the tracks leading out of Zurich’s main railway station, the bold suspension bridge spanning the Viamala Gorge, or the Wonder Bridge at the Technorama in Winterthur. They have collaborated with architects such as Meili+Peter, Miller+Maranta, Peter Zumthor and Diener & Diener. The duo are also researchers. In the 2010 publication “Landscape and Structures”, the Swiss contribution to the 12th International Architecture Exhibition in Venice, Conzett and photographer Martin Linsi laid out the essence of the engineer’s art. They have received a number of awards for their work, including the Prix Acier steel and metal construction prize in 2021 for the Negrelli footbridge. 

Klodin Erb
Klodin Erb’s work reacts like a seismograph to the social and media situations of the present day. Her primary medium is painting. Often, she adjusts her technique to the subject matter, underlining, emphasizing, accentuating and blending form with content to maximise the expressive effects of the painting. She always places the content of her pictures in the present. Her influences include popular and web culture as well as art history, along with a love of experimentation and a desire to continuously push the limits of the medium of painting. A precise observer of the world, Klodin Erb is interested in how our social structures are changing, and the challenges we face in the present. Just as our society evolves, so she constantly interrogates and renews her work as an artist, driving it constantly forwards. Forays into other media, such as film, installation and collage, prove to be extremely inspiring and fruitful ways of generating new kinds of image, which she then incorporates into her painting.

Publication
The Federal Office of Culture is publishing the Swiss Grand Award for Art / Prix Meret Oppenheim 2022, featuring portraits and interviews of the award winners. The interviews were conducted by Yann Chateigné Tytelman (independent curator, Brussels) with Caroline Bachmann, Fanni Fetzer (director of the Kunstmuseum Luzern) with Klodin Erb and Karin Salm (cultural journalist, Winterthur) with Jürg Conzett and Gianfranco Bronzini.

ISBN 978-3-9525420-7-1, German, French, Italian, English

Film Portraits
Director Marie-Eve Hildbrand (Terrain Vague, Lausanne) is producing film portraits of the laureates.

German, French with subtitles

They will be first presented at the Swiss Art Awards 2022 exhibition and available online from June 13, 2022 at swissartawards.ch.

The trailers are visible here.

Prix Meret Oppenheim
Created in 2001 by the Federal Office of Culture in collaboration with the Federal Art Commission, the Swiss Grand Award for Art / Prix Meret Oppenheim is awarded on the recommendation of the Commission to artists, architects, curators, researchers, and critics, whose internationally renowned work is of particular relevance and importance to Swiss artistic and architectural practice. Each award carries a prize of CHF 40,000. Further information at bak.admin.ch

For press enquiries please contact: media-kunst [​at​] schweizerkulturpreise.ch

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