Press Release

The UK's largest contemporary art prize returns for its eighth edition. Artes Mundi 8, the most ambitious contemporary visual art exhibition in Wales and the largest art prize in the UK, opens on October 26, 2018 at National Museum Cardiff.

The shortlist for Artes Mundi 8 brings together five international contemporary artists who directly engage with lived experience through their practice and explore contemporary social issues across the globe. This year’s shortlist spans different generations and cultures and includes some of the pioneers of current contemporary art practice on the world stage. They are: Anna Boghiguian / Bouchra Khalili / Otobong Nkanga / Trevor Paglen / Apichatpong Weerasethakul.



International exhibitions

International Archives 2nd half of 2018

Artes Mundi 8

National Museum Cardiff (United Kingdom)

26.10.2018 - 24.02.2019




Exhibition October 26, 2018 February 24, 2018. National Museum Cardiff, Cathays Park  - Cardiff CF10 3NP (United Kingdom). T.: +44 300 111 2333. Hours: 10:00 - 17:00. Free access.







The shortlist was selected by a panel of three international curators, Nick Aikens (Curator, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven), Daniela Pérez (independent curator based in Mexico City) and Alia Swastika (independent curator based in Jakarta), who considered over 600 nominations from 86 countries before narrowing the list down to five.

The work in the exhibition spans four continents and a varied range of artistic practices. Anna Boghiguian’s politically charged and nuanced drawings, paintings, cut-outs and installations survey globalism and intricate economies of power. Through her use of film, Bouchra Khalili deftly examines modes of resistance, minorities and identity, often in collaboration with her subjects. Otobong Nkanga’s intricate and beguiling tapestries, installations and her use of minerals and organic material interrogate our fast-changing relationship with the land and colonial legacies. Trevor Paglen’s unique use of photography, scientific collaboration and journalism offers the viewer a chance to see the unseen, investigating shadowy government practices, surveillance and hidden structures of authority, while Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s meditative and dreamlike films explore the ghosts of Thailand’s past, liminal spaces of memory and identity and shared consciousness and belonging.

For the exhibition, Anna Boghiguian and Otobong Nkanga are creating new work. Bouchra Khalili and Apichatpong Weerasethakul present UK premieres, while Trevor Paglen exhibits photographs from two seminal bodies of work.

One of the artists will be awarded the 40,000 GBP Artes Mundi 8 Prize on January 24, 2019.

Previous winners of the Artes Mundi Prize were: John Akomfrah (2017), Theaster Gates (2015), Teresa Margolles (2013), Yael Bartana (2011), N.S Harsha (2009), Eija-Lisa Ahtila (2007) and Xu Bing (2005).

Karen MacKinnon, Artes Mundi’s Director and Curator, said, “Artes Mundi 8 brings together the work of five outstanding international artists. Through their work they examine urgent topical issues such as globalisation, colonialism, environmental concern, resistance, statehood and individual autonomy. Through a wide range of practices that vary from the poetic to the rhetorical, these artists all engage poignantly with what it means to be human in an increasingly tumultuous world. In works that explore the global steel trade from Port Talbot, Wales to Jamshedpur, India, the French poet Jean Genet’s work with the Black Panther movement, state surveillance, autonomy and our relationship with the earth and its resources, there is fear, surrealism and provocation. But what connects the work in this diverse exhibition is its relevance and urgency, as the artists comment on and question the spirit of the age."

Artes Mundi 8, National Museum Cardiff

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