2022 Pollock Prize for Creativity Awarded to University of Texas Art Professor Beili Liu

by Jessica Fuentes January 30, 2022
A headshot of artist Beili Liu.

Beili Liu. Image: University of Texas at Austin

The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, established in 1985 following the death of abstract expressionist Lee Krasner, has awarded the 2022 Pollock Prize for Creativity to Austin-based artist Beili Liu

According to the foundation’s website, the Pollock Prize for Creativity was launched in 2016 to be “awarded to an outstanding artist whose work embodies high creative standards and exemplifies the impact of art on individuals and society.” Past awardees include Todd Wiliamson, Amy Sherald, and Gideon Mendel

Ms. Liu, who is a Studio Art Professor at the University of Texas, has been awarded $50,000 to be used toward her upcoming solo exhibition, Dreams of the High North: Between Survival and Belonging. The project will be informed by Ms. Liu’s research of environmental and geopolitical shifts in the Arctic through the lens of the indigenous Sami People’s cultural practices surrounding loss and grief. The sculptural installation and performance series will debut at Hå Gamle Prestegard, in Norway, in June 2023.

In a press release, Ronald D. Spencer, Chairman and CEO of Pollock-Krasner Foundation, stated, “Beili Liu is an immense talent whose work is both innovative and striking. From addressing environmental concerns to cultural narratives, in her work she encourages new ways of thinking and grappling with our shared histories.” 

He continued, “Fostering new work from visual artists is at the core of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation’s mission, and we are delighted to help support her work and exhibition in Norway in the coming year.”

Ms. Liu remarked, “Throughout my career as a visual artist, I have been committed to international and interdisciplinary exchange… I am deeply honored and humbled to have received the Pollock Prize for Creativity. The prize will provide essential support for my Arctic research and the development of a pivotal new body of work… I hold immense gratitude for this recognition at a significant juncture of my career. I know for certain that my experience and research in the High North will be life-changing and profoundly impact all my future work.”

A color photograph by ROMAIN BLANQUART of artist Beili Liu installing a work of art.

A few days before the opening of ArtPrize in Grand Rapids, Michigan, artists like Beili Liu of Austin, Texas get busy setting up their artworks. Image: ROMAIN BLANQUART Detroit Free Press

Throughout her twenty-year career, Ms. Liu has exhibited work across the world including exhibitions in Finland, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Lithuania, China, Taiwan, and across the United States. She has also been the recipient of of many prestigious awards, including a National Endowments for the Arts Challenge America Grant (2014), a Joan Mitchell Painters and Sculptors Grant (2016), she was named Texas State Artist in 3D Medium (2018), and was also named Fulbright Arctic Chair and received a Fulbright Distinguished Scholar Award (2021-22).

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