Camera Austria Award
for Contemporary Photography by the City of Graz 2005
Walid Raad

Infos

Award Ceremony

November 25, 2005
in the course of the
opening of the exhibition
David Goldblatt: Intersections

Camera Austria Award
for Contemporary Photography by the City of Graz 2005

Walid Raad

Description

Walid Raad’s (born in Chbanieh in 1967, Libanon (RL), lives and works in New York) work represents one of the most consistent art approaches toward questions of history, mass media and the artistic presentation of the Arab world. His work is acute in establishing a critique of multicultural story telling from the perspective of the capitalist first world. His main contribution to the status of contemporary art photography and the moving image is a multi-layered recontextualisation of the discrepancy between fiction and fact in current photography and mass media image productions and between the existential and strategical conditions of contemporary art projects.

Walid Ra’ad’s works include textual analysis, video, performance and photography projects that concentrate on the Lebanese civil wars, the Arab-Israeli conflicts, and documentary theory and practice. His activities also include “The Atlas Group”, a Beirut-based non-profit research foundation which documents the contemporary history of Lebanon. Furthermore, Raad is a founding member of the “Fondation Arabe pour l’Image”, an organisation formed in 1996 in Beirut which aims at promoting historical research of the visual culture of the Arab world and encouraging experimental video production in the region.

Walid Raad’s work is important because it shows clearly and deeply the clash between existential stories pretending to be documents and the absolutely anti-documentary visual approach present today on several levels of image production. Raad’s work confronts us with the mise-en-scène of appearance in the mass media, history and art. The result is a queer story, that is not-right and not quite in balance with truth and falsity and which points precisely to the conditions of construction of such images and their underlying histories. Therefore it is possible to connect Raad’s work also with political story telling and with new relations between politics and representation.

In view of all these layers of Walid Raad’s work that leads the contemporary viewer to ask questions about conditions of visibility and interpretations of the contemporary world and its histories, the jury expresses its firm conviction that Walid Raad’s work is an important œuvre of our day that deserves the award and a special presentation.

Jury
Marina Gržinić
, professor, Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna
Thomas Trummer, curator, Center for Contemporary Art, Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna
Bas Vroege, editor and curator, Edam
Manfred Willmann, publisher of Camera Austria International, Graz

A contribution on Walid Raad was published in Camera Austria International 80/2002.

The Camera Austria Award founded by the City of Graz in 1989 in recognition of the international importance of the magazine Camera Austria International and is awarded every two years to a single artist for his/her work in the field of photography on the basis of the suggestion of an international jury. The prize-money is Euro 14,500.

Views

  • Preisverleihung / Award Ceremony, 25.11.2005
    Ausstellungsraum / Exhibitions space Camera Austria
    David Goldblatt, Christine Frisinghelli, Walid Raad, Reinhard Braun
    Camera Austria 2005

  • Preisverleihung / Award Ceremony, 25.11.2005
    Ausstellungsraum / Exhibitions space Camera Austria
    Camera Austria 2005

  • Walid Raad, Sweet Talk (Plate 402), 2005.
    Courtesy: The Atlas Group / Sfeir Semler Galerie / Anthony Reynolds Gallery.

  • Walid Raad, I Only Wish That I Could Weep (Videostill), 2003.
    Courtesy: The Atlas Group / Sfeir Semler Galerie / Anthony Reynolds Gallery.

  • Walid Raad, I Was Overcome With a Momentary Panic at the Thought That They Might Be Right (Detail), 2004.
    Courtesy: The Atlas Group / Sfeir Semler Galerie / Anthony Reynolds Gallery.

  • Walid Raad, Civilizationally We Do Not Dig Holes To Bury Ourselves 2003.
    Paris 1958
    Courtesy: The Atlas Group / Sfeir Semler Galerie / Anthony Reynolds Gallery.

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