Julien Creuzet Selected for BMW Art Journey 2021
Art Basel and BMW are delighted to present Julien Creuzet as the BMW Art Journey winner 2021. An international jury selected him unanimously from a shortlist of three artists represented by galleries who were originally selected for this year’s Art Basel in Hong Kong. Julien Creuzet is represented by the gallery High Art, Paris. The BMW Art Journey is part of BMW Group’s global cultural engagement celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. Committed to the fields of modern and contemporary art, classical music, jazz and sound as well as architecture and design, the BMW Group has been an integral part of culture on a global scale.
For Julien Creuzet, a member of the Caribbean diaspora in Paris, the BMW Art Journey – the tenth in the series – will mark a return to his ancestral home, a place he calls “the heart of my imagination.” In a poetic journey that intertwines personal discovery with profound environmental concern and a generous spirit of sharing, he will centre his travels around a geographically and culturally distinct region. In Martinique, he will work closely with a community of art students from Fort-de-France, as well as musicians and filmmakers. His plans include creating hybrid sculptures of Antillean fauna as well as plastic and industrial objects, in a gesture of circularity. In Guadeloupe, he will film underwater scenes as well as obtain aerial visuals with drones. Often neglected in the metropolitan imagination, the Antilles are not just homeland for Creuzet but a site inviting consideration of the legacies of colonialism, conflict, and marginalization. During his journey, Creuzet will meet with cultural actors and collect visual materials and music for a “Caribbean road movie” that merges fiction and documentary, augmented by poetry and 3-D art.
“I am really excited to be the winner of the BMW Art Journey: It is a great chance to reconnect with the heart of my imagination and my Native land. This journey will allow me to collaborate with local artists, writers, poets, musicians, students and then setting up a real environment in Martinique,” says Julien Creuzet.
Members of the international expert jury are Claire Hsu, Director, Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong; Matthias Mühling, Director, Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus und Kunstbau, Munich; Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, President, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin; Philip Tinari, Director, UCCA Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing; and Samson Young, artist and winner of the first BMW Art Journey.
“Julien Creuzet’s journey is not a trip to a distant and unknown destination, but rather a return to a familiar place – a place of family, youth, and education,” the jury noted, reaching its unanimous decision. “The project rethinks mobility, the climate crisis, and societal shifts in the wake of Covid-19. Focusing on a single location, Creuzet underscores the importance of the local and of reconnecting with one’s roots. His journey combines histories with fantasies and ancestral connections with cosmopolitanism. We were impressed by the generosity of his project, how it makes space for other artists – a gesture of care and humility that’s in keeping with our healing moment.”
In addition to Julien Creuzet, the shortlisted artists for the BMW Art Journey 2021 were: Kelvin Kyun Kun Park (represented by Vanguard Gallery, Shanghai) and Alice Wang (represented by Capsule Shanghai).
Launched in 2015, the BMW Art Journey is a collaboration between Art Basel and BMW, created to recognize and support emerging artists worldwide. Since 2020, the circle of eligible artists has broadened and includes not only emerging and mid-career artists from the Discoveries sector but also artists represented by galleries founded no more than ten years ago at Art Basel’s show in Hong Kong. In recognition of the ongoing exceptional circumstances caused by the pandemic, the international expert jury conducted its selection process online. The selected artists were then invited to submit proposals for a journey aimed to further develop their artistic work. Based on these proposals the winner was selected. Julien Creuzet plans to start his BMW Art Journey in summer 2021.
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