Preis der Nationalgalerie 2021

Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum for Contemporary Art – Berlin

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© v. l. n. r.: Isabel O’Toole | Calla Henkel & Max Pitegoff | Sjur Einen Sævik | Diana Phammatter

Shortlist exhibition of the Preis der Nationalgalerie 2021

This February, an international jury nominated Lamin Fofana, Calla Henkel & Max Pitegoff, Sandra Mujinga and Sung Tieu for the Preis der Nationalgalerie 2021. The museum prize is awarded every two years in support and recognition of outstanding work by artists under 40 who are based in Germany. The nominated artists address topics such as movement and migration, belonging and alienation, self-perception and external perceptions of the self, shifting logics of public and private space, as well as the potential of sound and music to act as a social force.

Lamin Fofana

Lamin Fofana’s experience of moving between Africa, North America, and Europe is palpable in his experimental approach to creating sonic environments. Crucial in the context of this production is an engagement with historical forms of Black activism and critical thought, including the writing of Amiri Baraka, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Sylvia Wynter. Yet his work expands beyond the act of translation to create a space for shared experience and heightened awareness. In doing so, he proposes an active and open practice of listening, a skill which represents an essential precondition for coexistence.

Calla Henkel & Max Pitegoff

Over the course of the past ten years, the work of Calla Henkel & Max Pitegoff has been both a documentation of and a catalyst for socio-urban changes within the context of Berlin and beyond. Their practice has developed out of the tradition of documentary photography to encompass the nurturing of their own creative community within a number of different venues that the artist have created, including bars and spaces for performances and events. Emerging from these lived experiences, their photographic works pose crucial questions about what is to be presented to the outside world and what is to be safeguarded, allowing a multitude of narratives to unfold around different settings.

Sandra Mujinga

Operating with a freshness and energy, Sandra Mujinga finds images and spatial arrangements for transient worlds, which extend beyond an anthropocentric paradigm. Her engagement with a notion of place, both as exhibition space and as a wider social category, offers a commentary on settings and locations, particularly those that consider themselves liberal. By not only navigating a condition of inbetweenness, but also by reconfiguring it and sharing it with others in a broad variety of media, she questions established principles of sculpture and formulates new and often fantastic means of being present.

Sung Tieu

By using a variety of artistic media including installation, sound, text, video and public interventions, Sung Tieu creates formally minimalistic and impressive environments that trigger immediate sensual and somatic experience. Starting out from an interest in psychoacoustics, her works depict how sound can be used as an invasive tool in order to manipulate individual and collective behaviour, beliefs, and desires. Informed by the conflicting mechanisms of care and control, and the unstable spatial and social relations that impact on life in diaspora, she investigates the diffusion of information and the movement of people, goods and. 

On October 7th, 2021, a second jury will convene to decide upon the recipient of the Preis der Nationalgalerie 2021.

The exhibition is made possible by the Freunde der Nationalgalerie and supported by BMW.

Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum for Contemporary Art – Berlin
Invalidenstraße 50-51
10557 Berlin



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