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Studio Arts' Raphaëlle de Groot wins 2012 Sobey Art Award

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Raphaëlle de Groot, Port de tete (detail), inkjet print, 51 x 71.5 cm, 2010.
Photo credit Mirko Sabatini.

Raphaëlle de Groot, Studio Arts visiting artist (Painting and Drawing), has won the 2012 Sobey Art Award.

The Sobey Art Award, Canada's pre-eminent award for contemporary Canadian art, was created in 2002 by the Sobey Art Foundation. It is an annual $50,000 prize given to an artist under 40 who has exhibited in a public or commercial art gallery within 18 months of being nominated.

Students in the Department of Studio Arts benefit tremendously from classes taught by visiting artists who are often at pivotal moments in their careers, says the chair of the department, Janet Werner. "The energy, enthusiasm and excitement these artists bring to the classroom is reciprocated by the students they teach who appreciate the opportunity to work with and study under artists whose research is generating significant interest in the public sphere," she says. "Raphaëlle de Groot is the second Sobey Art Award winner who has taught in the department, following Daniel Barrow who won the award in 2010 also while teaching at Concordia in Studio Arts."

In commenting on de Groot's achievement, the curatorial committee said:

"Raphaëlle de Groot makes artwork in varied contexts, most often outside of the conventional art world. This process affords her the opportunity to meet people from different milieus, such as a community of nuns, workers at a textile factory, domestic workers, and students. Through her practice, we are called on to be active witnesses, intrigued by what we see, disturbed by what we discover of ourselves and by what is revealed to us in this encounter with art and the artist in the present. Her projects take the shape of actions, objects, images, and documentation. De Groot's practice explores and challenges ways in which art is created and received. Her work reinforces common values and shared human experiences."

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Posted on Dec. 4


Concordia University