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Seattle artist, Kate Vrijmoet, wins a top award at Ecuadorean painting biennale

May 7, 2010

6413 Seaview Ave NW ? Seattle, WA 98107 ? 206 728.1980 ? www.cocaseattle.org

For Immediate Press Release: 05/07/2010
Contact: Ray C. Freeman III 206 349-3147 ray@cocaseattle.org

Seattle artist, Kate Vrijmoet, wins a top award at Ecuadorean painting biennale

Winning painting “Shotgun Accident,” latex paint on canvas, 62.5” x 49.5, 2009 (image attached)

(Seattle) Seattle artist, Kate Vrijmoet’s, painting titled “Shotgun Accident” won the $5,000 third prize at Álvaro Noboa International Painting Biennale of Guayaquil, Ecuador. Ms. Vrijmoet attended the award ceremony in Guayaquil on April 28, 2010 with Alvaro Noboa, founder, and Pablo Matinez, Director of the Luis Noboa Naranjo Museum, sponsor of the competition.

Four hundred Paintings were selected from 25 countries for the juried exhibition. There were two other cash prizes, $20,000 for first prize going to Ecuadorian artist, Juan Caguana, for his painting titled “Picnic”, and $10,000 going to Cuba artist, Saidel Brito for “Capitulares.” All prize-winning paintings will be acquired by the Luis Noboa Naranjo Museum.

"Even though I have been pouring all my energy into painting, I didn't see this coming”, Ms. Vrijmoet, says. “South American culture has an intense love for painting, but I didn't think my rather difficult work would find such a reception there - even at a major international event like this one. It is a significant cultural event that Mr. Noboa hosts for his country and I am honored to win this impressive award”, she said.

This year’s Biennale jury included Seattle based curator, Joseph C. Roberts, Argentinean Alejandra Rosetti, of Sotheby’s NY, Ecuadorean artist, Theo Constante, Ecuadorean artist Larissa Marangoni, and Ecuadorean museum director and artist, Mariela Garcia.

According to art critic, Dan Kany, “Vrijmoet’s radical project is immediately apparent in her “accident series” in which a single figure is in the process of a horrific (and usually grotesquely bloody) accident with a chainsaw, shotgun, axe or similar tools and weapons. Her handling of the paint matches the situation’s goriness – melting bodies tossing explosive splatters of blood. Often, her subjects seem not yet to be aware of the violence they have perpetrated on themselves: The viewer plays the role of the witness much as he might watch a horror movie – completely aware of the violence and agony that awaits the victim’s realization. “Shotgun Accident” is very much in the thick of Vrijmoet’s “accident series.”
Vrijmoet’s subject, however, is less the gore than the moment the gore marks: A moment of waking, of a new consciousness, of self-awareness. Her subject is trauma itself – the word coming from the German for “dream.” The accidents mark the rest of the victim’s life, whether it is merely to be a few more seconds or to be lived from then on without an arm, a leg or an eye – or with deep physical and psychological scars. If this man survives the encounter with the shotgun, his life will never be the same”, Kany says.
Shotgun Accident
Vrijmoet received her MFA from Syracuse University. Her work has been shown in dozens of exhibitions around the country. Vrijmoet was recently featured in a solo exhibition at Seattle’s Center on Contemporary Art curated by Joseph C. Roberts.  An exhibition catalog with texts by Roberts, Elatia Harris and Daniel Kany will be available in June (www.cocaseattle.org).

For information about the Álvaro Noboa International Painting Biennale or the Luis Noboa Naranjo Museum, contact Pablo Matinez, pmartinezrojas1@yahoo.com Tel: 00 593-4-2561893 www.museoluisnoboanaranjo.com

Category: Press

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