Marlene Dumas wins prestigious prize

2011-11-03 11:01
Janice Keogh
Johannesburg - South African born artist Marlene Dumas received the prestigious Rolf Schock Prize for visual arts in Stockholm, Sweden on Wednesday.

This prize is awarded every two years in four categories: visual arts, mathematics, logic and philosophy, and music.

The prize is named after the Swedish artist and philosopher Rolf Schock and was introduced in 1993. The winner in each category receives 500 000 Swedish krona, which is equivalent to R600 000.

Dumas was born in Cape Town in 1953 and has been living in Amsterdam since 1976.

She made her debut in 1977 at the Galerie Paul Andriesse in Amsterdam, which still exhibits her work today.

The list of galleries where she has since showcased her work include the Tate Gallery in London, the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France, and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

"She has a unique talent for depicting human vulnerability and nobility in her paintings without doing away with adversity.

"With compassion and critical insight she has highlighted issues of race, ethnocentrism, gender and sexuality," says the news statement issued by the Royal Academy of Fine Arts.

South African sculptor Angus Taylor was full of praise on Wednesday for Dumas's artistry and international success.

"For a South African artist to win such a prize, the Nobel Prize of art, only shows other local artists that something like this is not beyond their reach," Taylor told Die Burger.