Artist Jung Eun-young was announced the winner of the Korea Artist Prize 2018 on Wednesday evening. The competition is organized by the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea.
Jung was one of four finalists for the prize. The others were Gu Min-ja, Okin Collective and Jung Jae-ho.
The artist won the prize for her exploration of “Yeoseong Gukgeuk,” an all-female theater genre that was once popular in the 1950s but is now mostly forgotten.
Artist Jung Eun-young, the winner of the Korea Artist Prize 2018 MMCA
Through video works and archive materials, Jung explores the ideological forces and gender norms that surrounded the theater genre in the mid-20th century. She also reintroduces the political power of anomalous artistic practices by the female theater genre.
The works were reviewed by a five-member jury consisting of MMCA Director Bartomeu Mari, Mudam Luxembourg Director Suzanne Cotter, China-based curator Wang Chunchen, chief curator of the 2018 Shanghai Biennale Cuauthemoc Medina and the chief curator of the 2018 Shanghai Biennale and Asia Culture Center artistic director Kim Sung-won.
“(Jung) has created an ambitious and richly articulated exhibition that brings to light the historical phenomenon of ‘Yeoseong Gukgeuk’ to pose questions around gender and self-representation in Korean contemporary society. Her installation films that themselves constitute scripted works of choreographed theatre staged by the artist, and her use of archival sources, are beautifully accomplished in creating a complete aesthetic, spatial and intellectual environment,” director Cotter said.
The top prize comes with a cash prize of 10 million won ($8,922), in addition to 40 million won awarded to each finalist upon selection.
Jung’s work will be exhibited at the Korean Pavilion of the Venice Biennale in 2019.
By Shim Woo-hyun (email@example.com)