Alaa Abu Asad (DAI, 2018) is among the 10 shortlisted artists for the 10th edition of the Young Artist of the Year Award (YAYA 2018). In collaboration with the participants, Emily Jacir will curate an exhibition, organised for the first time at the Qattan Foundation’s new building in Ramallah.

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The Culture and Arts Programme (CAP) of the A. M. Qattan Foundation (AMQF) has announced the 10 artists who have qualified for the second phase of the 2018 Young Artist of the Year Award (YAYA), the 10th edition of this biennial Award. The 10 artists have been selected on the recommendations of an independent Jury. The Jury considered and evaluated the artists’ applications, taking into consideration the criteria of excellence, serious endeavour, authentic ideas, innovation and creativity.

The 2018 YAYA exhibition will be organised for the first time at the Foundation’s new building in Ramallah. In celebration of this 10th edition of YAYA, and of all its achievements over the past years, the Foundation decided that the Jury for this first phase of YAYA 2018 would include, in addition to the YAYA 2018 curator Emily Jacir, 10 of the artists who have participated in previous YAYA programmes: Ahlam Shibli, Dirar Kalash, Hani Zurob, Inas Halabi, Jumana Manna, Majd Abdel Hamid, Mohammed Joha, Nour Abed, Omarivs Ioseph Filivs Dinæ and Shada Safadi.

The A.M. Qattan Foundation extend their gratitude to all the Jury members for their attention and care in the selection process. All the Jury members contribute their time and effort to the process voluntarily. For the final selection of the prize-winning works, the Foundation will assign a different Jury, which will include distinguished artists, critics and curators from Palestine and beyond.

Shortlisted artists

The Culture and Arts Programme hereby announces that the shortlisted artists are: Alaa Abu Asad, from Nazareth and currently residing in Rotterdam and studying with the Dutch Art Institute; Yousef Odeh, from Florida and currently residing in Cologne; Dina Mimi, from Jerusalem and studying in Sierre, Switzerland; Walid Al Wawi, a Palestinian born in Amman and living in London; Dima Srouji, from Nazareth and now based in Ramallah; Leila Abdul Razzaq, a Palestinian born in Chicago but living in Detroit; Firas Shehadeh, a Palestinian, born in Amman and currently studying in Vienna; Safa Khatib, from Nazareth; Haitham Haddad, from Haifa; and Ula Zeitoun from Nazareth. 

YAYA 2018 curator

“YAYA 2018 will work on themes derived from the art practices of participants,” the curator Emily Jacir has stated.

In collaboration with the participants, Emily Jacir will establish the direction for the exhibition based on discussions, the exchange of ideas, and workshops. Jacir intends to launch a dialogue and explore potential themes, informed by cultural, political and social history, which young artists uncover in their daily practices.

Jacir looks forwards to working with the 10 artists through a variety of methods and forms. Some of these will be grounded in direct interaction with each of the artists on an individual basis, as well as with all the artists as a collective.

The curator will be encouraging applicants to engage with a broad range of art media, practices and research topics. The latter will be part of the group discussions between the curator and artists. Every participant is expected to present and share knowledge underlying their projects with the group.

The curatorial proposal for YAYA 2018 is to leave the final Award exhibition without a theme, allowing the artists participating in the project to share the production of knowledge. They will reassess and promote their practices in the context of a broader artistic discourse with their colleagues, as well as with guest artists whom Jacir will invite to contribute to the process. 

A grant to contribute to production

As a contribution to covering the production costs of the proposed art works, the Culture and Arts Programme will support each project with US$ 1,000. The shortlisted artists will be in frequent contact and be having regular conversations with the Curator over a period of over 10 months, as they develop and produce their final art works. The completed works will be exhibited in a two-month exhibition in the Foundation’s gallery at its new building in the Al-Tireh neighbourhood in Ramallah. During the exhibition, a closing event will be organised to announce the winners of YAYA 2018.

The Young Artist Award, named after the late artist Hassan Hourani, is one of the most important events of visual arts in Palestine and has been organised on a biannual basis since 2000. Locally and internationally renowned artists, critics and curators have been invited to participate in the successive juries of YAYA.

The Young Artist Award is open to Palestinian artists between the ages of 22 and 30. Applicants should be Palestinian, or of Palestinian origin and descent, regardless of current places of residence; the Award is also open to artists from the occupied Golan Heights. YAYA grants prize awards totalling US$ 12,000 to the first, second and third prize winners, who will be selected by the final Jury in the concluding phase of the competition. The Foundation continues to be in touch with the artists who participate in the final phase, offering opportunities for international art residencies and providing support to exhibit both locally and internationally.