€30,000 Prize for Water-Tower-Loving Hilla Becher

Hilla Becher (2013) Photo Elke Wetzig

Photographer Hilla Becher has been awarded, the Großen Kulturpreis der Sparkassen-Kulturstiftung Rheinland (Grand Prize for Culture of the Sparkasse Cultural Foundation of the Rhineland). At €30,000 prize, the cultural award is one of one of Germany’s largest art prizes. Awarded since 1989, it recognizes persons or institutions of outstanding cultural influence in the Rhineland.

Becher is known for founding the Düsseldorf School of Photography with her late husband Bernd Becher who passed away in 2007. The pair are noted for their long running series of stark, black and white photos of functionalist, industrial structures such as water towers, nuclear reactors, factory buildings, and warehouses. Their oeuvre has had immense influence on the field of contemporary photography, with their students Andreas Gursky, Thomas Ruff, and Thomas Struth, among others dominating the discipline.

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