Rhizome Names Winners of Third Prix Net Art

This year's award has expanded to include three recipients, including Eva and Franco Mattes.

Eva and Franco Mattes, New York (2015). Photo by Natan Dvir/Haaretz, courtesy the artists and Carroll/Fletcher, London.

Rhizome, the online non-profit digital arts organization, has announced that its third annual Prix Net Art has been awarded to the artists Porpentine Charity Heartscape, Eva and Franco Mattes, and Bogosi Sekhukhuni.

In previous years, the award has gone to two recipients, but after much deliberation, the jury—comprised of Chronus Art Center artistic director Zhang Ga, New Museum curator Lauren Cornell, the Whitney Museum’s new media curator Christiane Paul, and Rhizome assistant curator Aria Dean—expanded Prix Net Art to include this year’s honored two artists and an artist-duo, each of whom will receive $5,000.

Prix Net Art is defined by the organization as “a cash prize that goes to artists who are committed to working online and who represent important directions in contemporary net art practice.”

In a statement to ARTnews, Rhizome executive director Zachary Kaplan expanded: “The three exceptional artists/artist duo were awarded the prize for their ongoing excellence and represent the future of the form. They show the diversity and quality of art on the internet.”

From left: Porpentine Charity Heartscape; Bogosi Sekhukhuni. Courtesy Rhizome.

From left: Porpentine Charity Heartscape; Bogosi Sekhukhuni. Courtesy Rhizome.

Eva and Franco Mattes—perhaps the most recognizable of the three winners—have been collaborating since the mid-1990s. Also known as 0100101110101101.org, the duo are are well-known pioneers or the Net.art movement, and are self-described Net.art pranksters and hacktivists.

Porpentine Charity Heartscape has made work commissioned by Vice, the New Inquiry, and Rhizome, and is set to exhibit at the 2017 Whitney Biennial. According to her website, she is “available for commissioned interactive fiction, games, writing, net art, and whatever weird shit.”

Bogosi Sekhukhuni—the only of the three to not have collaborated with Rhizome in the past—is a founding member of the “tech-health artist group” NTU and is part of the CUSS Group collective. Originally from South Africa, his work focuses on the consequences of diaspora and questions pop culture and African spirituality.

Prix Net Art is presented by Rhizome in partnership with Chronus Art Center in Shanghai. As described in a statement from this year’s jury, the winners “represent differently formulated but intersecting concerns and directions in the field of net art.”

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