These Are The Shortlisted Artist For The Henrike Grohs Art Award

Michael Soi

The Henrike Grohs Art Award is a roving biennial art prize conceived by the Goethe-Institut and the Grohs family in memory of the former Head of Goethe-Institut in Abidjan, Henrike Grohs.
The prize is run through an open call process and is aimed at young artists who live and work on the African continent. It is awarded biennially to an artist or arts collective practicing in the field of visual arts. The award aims to support emerging artists in their careers, responding to the challenges of practicing on the African continent. Artistic quality is the most important criteria for the award.

The winning individual artist or collective will receive a cash prize of 20.000€ and 10.000€ towards the production of a catalogue on the winner’s work. Two artists or collectives will be selected as runners up and will be awarded a cash prize of 5.000€ each.

These are the shortlisted

Misheck Masamvu

Misheck Masamvu

Misheck Masamvu was born in Penhalonga, Zimbabwe. Having studied at Atelier Delta and Kunste Akademie in Munich, Masamvu initially specialised in the realist style, and later developed a more avant-garde expressionist mode of representation with dramatic and graphic brushstrokes.

Tonis Saadoja

Jackie Karuti

Jackie Karuti is an artist based in Nairobi. Her practice is largely experimental and employs the use of new media through drawings, video, installations and performance art. Her work is founded on ideas around knowledge production & accessibility as well as the depths of possibility enabled by radical imagination. (Circle Art Agency)

Kitso Lynn

Kitso Lynn

Kitso Lynn Lelliott’s practice moves between video installation, film and writing. She is preoccupied with enunciations from spaces beyond epistemic power and the crisis such epistemically disobedient articulations cause to hegemony. Her work interrogates the ‘real’ as it is shaped through contesting epistemologies, their narratives and the form these took over the Atlantic during the formative episode that shaped the modern age. Her work is an enactment of enunciating from elision and between historically subjugated subjectivities, privileging South-South relations in relation to the epistemologically unmediated by the Global North. She was laureate of the Iwalewahaus art award in 2017 and was a featured guest artist at The Flaherty Seminar 2018. In 2019 Lelliott won the NIHSS award for best visual arts.

Chemu Ng’ok

Chemu Ng’ok

Chemu Ng’ok was born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1989 – where she currently lives and works.

Ivy Brandie Chemutai Ng’ok completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts, specialising in painting, at Rhodes University in Grahamstown, South Africa. She was the recipient of the Masters Bursary for 2015 – as part of the Mellon Foundation’s Visual and Performing Arts of Africa Research Focus Group – and completed her Masters degree in Fine Arts in 2017.

Syowia Kyambi

Syowia Kyambi

Syowia Kyambi is based in Nairobi and of Kenyan and German origin. Her practice probes issues of race, perception and hierarchical systems, gender studies and body memory. Her work examines how the past is affecting our present, influencing the ideas of the future. She is an alumnus of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and completed commissions for the Nairobi National Museum (2007) and the Kenyan Art Fair (2014). Kyambi has been the recipient of the CAD+SR research fellowship (2018-2020 cycle), the Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship (2017) and the Art in Global Health grant from the Wellcome Trust Fund in the United Kingdom (2013). 

Michael Soi

Michael W. Soi (1972) is a Kenyan artist who has been working in Nairobi since 1995 after completion of his fine art and art history studies. Soi is inspired by contemporary life in Nairobi. His work provides a photographic diary of Nairobi and is a satirical commentary of social, economic and political trends. His work explores relationships – intergenerational, interracial or generally what he calls the economics of love, commercial sex work and popular culture within the context of globalization & consumerism.

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