Following its partial reopening last week, The Contemporary Austin has announced that Lebanese-born, Paris-based artist Tarek Atoui is the recipient of the 2022 Suzanne Deal Booth / FLAG Art Foundation Prize. The prize, founded by The Contemporary Austin trustee Suzanne Deal Booth and administered by The Contemporary Austin, began in 2016, awarding unrestricted funds biannually to artists selected by a panel.
Atoui will receive a $200,000 cash award, and a solo exhibition of his work will debut at The Contemporary Autin’s Jones Center in the spring of 2022. The show then travels to The FLAG Art Foundation in New York City for the fall of 2022. Both venues will produce public programming around the exhibition and a catalog for the show.
Atoui states: “In these times of social distancing and impossibility of coming together, this award is an homage to collaboration, performativity, improvisation, and composition. It is celebrating the role of art in bringing people together, and I’m honored to be its recipient.”
“We are thrilled with the Advisory Committee’s selection of Tarek Atoui,” states Heather Pesanti, Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs at The Contemporary Austin. “In such unprecedented times the museum is grateful to have the opportunity to support Atoui and his collaborators as they continue to create different ways of experiencing art and sound to several communities. His sensitivity to place through research and collaboration are perfect for our times. Given Austin’s rich live music community, we look forward to the partnerships with musicians and other creative individuals and organizations throughout the city that might be catalyzed through this exhibition.”
The 2020 recipient of the Prize was Nicole Eisenman.
For more about the Suzanne Deal Booth / FLAG Art Foundation Prize, please visit the Contemporary Austin’s website here.
Born in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1980, Atoui moved to France in 1998, where he studied economics and electroacoustic music. Working together with instrument makers and sound engineers, he co-creates experimental instruments and sound assemblages, ranging from reinterpretations of ancient instruments to electronic and computer-based ones. These handmade objects simultaneously possess compelling beauty as abstract sculptures and function as musical instruments activated through performance. His practice connects visual art with sound as a medium and creates opportunities for unprecedented cross-disciplinary and cross-genre creative synergies. Through ongoing projects that span years and continents, he has brought together diverse artists and musicians to create installations and performances that explore alternative manifestations of sound through vision, touch, and gesture, highlighting its expansive and universal potential.