“Emancipatory imagination and radical visual poetics” are among the qualities the judges were looking for in awarding the 2023 Joan Miró Prize, and they found them in the work of Vietnam-based artist Tuan Andrew Nguyen.
The Prize, designed for an early- or mid-career artist at a critical point in their professional life, returns this year after a brief pandemic hiatus with lead support from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF). It is organized by Fundació Joan Miró to recognize an artist whose work resonates with the values and honors the legacy of Barcelona-born Miró. Part of that legacy was Miró’s lifelong commitment to supporting younger artists, and the 2023 Prize added a new element of inviting primary school and university design students to engage creatively with the work of the artists shortlisted, including Nguyen’s.
“His practice is fueled by research and a commitment to communities that have faced traumas caused by colonialism, war, and displacement,” wrote Fundació Joan Miró about Nguyen’s work, which spans media from sculpture to moving images. “Through his continuous attempts to engage with vanishing or vanquished historical memory, Nguyen explores the erasures that the colonial project has brought to bear on certain parts of the world.”
“SNF is proud to support this iteration of the Miró Prize, not only to recognize and lift up incredible early- and mid-career artists from around the world like those shortlisted, but also to help encourage the sense that creating art can be a part of creating positive change,” said SNF Global Programs Director Alexander Kambouroglou.
Miró’s legacy should encourage us, he said, in “reimagining what our relationship to art can be: How it can inspire and even overcome us. How it can enable us to rethink the parameters of the possible. How it can be a means for younger people to share their vision for moving the world, rather than simply being moved along by it.”
Helping ensure that people of all abilities, wherever they live, have opportunities to make, share, and experience art has been a key component of SNF’s grantmaking work over the years, and this aim guided its support for the Joan Miró Prize. Established in 2007, the Prize has spotlighted artists from Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, North America, and South Asia and commissioned them to produce new exhibitions while also connecting candidates to wider artistic networks.