The installation artist from Mexico is the 16th winner of the CHF100,000 ($106,000) prize, awarded annually by the Museum Haus Konstruktiv, where Ortega will hold a solo exhibition next year.
This content was published on November 24, 2022 - 14:17 November 24, 2022 - 14:17 Keystone-SDA/dos
The jury was particularly impressed by how Ortega's method“always combines the large-scale gesture with a subtle feeling for the poetics of the everyday”, Museum Haus Konstruktiv wroteexternal link on Wednesday.
Ortega, from Mexico City, was born in 1967, and worked as a political cartoonist before embarking on an art career. In 2003, he gained attention at the 50th Venice Biennale with“Cosmic Thing” – a fully dismantled Volkswagen Beetle whose individual parts were suspended from the ceiling, giving the impression of a technical diagram of the car hanging in space.
Following this, the Museum writes, Ortega's installations have tended to be made from everyday products, but which are stacked, twisted, or dismantled, in a practice that“consistently raises questions about the historical, political and economic conditions of their production in a global context”.
Ortega has also worked in the mediums of sculpture, photography, film, and performance art.
The award is divided into a CHF20,000 prize and CHF80,000 of funding to organise a solo exhibition in the Museum Haus Konstruktiv, which will begin on October 26, 2023. Last year's winner of the prize, and the current exhibitor, is Kapwani Kiwanga.
Basel's Fine Arts Museum previously held a solo exhibition of Ortega's work in 2004.
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