LOEWE has revealed the 29 artists who are shortlisted for the 2019 Craft Prize. The finalists range from recent graduates and emerging artists to well-known names and leaders in their respective fields; LOEWE recognizes each as having made fundamental contributions to the development of contemporary craft. In its third edition, the prize presents a diverse spectrum of technique, media, and modes of expression.

A panel of nine international experts convened in Madrid to review 2,500 submissions to select the shortlist, considering technical merit, innovation, and artistic vision. From there, a jury of 11 leaders from the world of design, architecture, journalism, criticism and museum curatorship, will select a winner.

Works include Eolophus (Hallstattpiece) by German artist , an expressive interpretation of the vessel form made of terra nigra, engobes, and coloured glaze. Sada embraces the possibilities of clay and of colour during the firing process, applying expressive painterly surface treatment to an otherwise traditional vase.

Japanese artist took inspiration from a simple bag of oranges, elevating the humble form through his use of glossy red-wine coloured lacquer to add sensuous appeal. The finished product is entirely contemporary, belying the fact that the urushi lacquer technique originated in Japan between the 7th and 8th centuries.

Even more luxurious is Netherlands-based series, forms made of bog oak, silver, and amber. The minimal pieces could better be described as wearable sculptures, surpassing conventional jewellery to forms more usually found in a museum or gallery.

The finalists’ work will be exhibited at Isamu Noguchi’s indoor stone garden ‘Heaven’ at the Sogetsu Kaikan in Tokyo, from June 26 to July 22. The winner, to be announced at the opening of the exhibition on June 25, will be awarded 50,000 euros.

 

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