The STRABAG Artaward International has established itself as one of the most highly endowed private art prizes for painting and drawing in Austria. Initially established as an Austrian art prize, in 2009 it was expanded to include international artists.
Applicants compete to win a main prize and four recognitions, with prize money totaling € 35,000 awarded each year. A three-year cycle with the participating countries Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria will enter the last round next year. In addition, Ukrainian artists will be eligible to apply for the STRABAG Artaward International 2023 next year in a sign of solidarity.
In January 2022, 677 artists submitted work to the STRABAG Artaward International online, with 77 subsequently invited to submit the originals of their artwork for appraisal during the final jury session. The jury found that the applicants’ work covered a wide range of styles and themes this year, making it difficult to select the final five artists.
The award has helped advance many young artists’ careers for 27 years, contributing to the important process of forging international networks between a generation of emerging artists. ‘’In this context, the age limit of 40 keeps the STRABAG Artaward perpetually youthful, as a prize that supports young, European art with its finger on the pulse of the age.’’ – Tanja Skorepa, juror
The Shortlisted Artists
- ANDREAS WERNER / AT
- DÁNIEL BERNÁTH / HU
- ÁKOS EZER / HU
- MARCIN JASIK / PL
- GEORG PINTERITSCH / AT
The Winning Artist
For the first time in many years, an artist almost entirely dedicated to drawing has been announced as the winner of the STRABAG Artaward: Andreas Werner (*1984, Merseburg an der Saale). The artist succeeds in revealing new aspects to the traditional medium of drawing, while most importantly maintaining its socio-political relevance.
‘’One fundamental attitude always remains the same: Why was the idea of the future once so much friendlier? And what actually happened to all the utopias?’’ – Andreas Werner, artist
The Awarded Artists
DÁNIEL BERNÁTH / HU
The Hungarian artist Dániel Bernáth (*1990, Debrecen) is interested in forms that he finds while observing animate and inanimate nature or his cultural surroundings. His work exists in dialogue with modernist movements of organic abstraction. Some of his methodologies reference historical processes, as the artist uses the almost medieval technique of glued plywood panels which he uses as a surface to create a pictorial narrative consisting of several layers.
ÁKOS EZER / HU
Young Hungarian painter Ákos Ezer (*1989, Pécs) has participated in a number of group and solo shows around Europe. He works in contemporary figurative painting, creating a grotesque breakdance of strange deformed figures in his current series of works.
“The heroes of my stories, with their activities, are searching for their own roots – individual histories which they have inherited from art, and especially from painting. Their movements reflect their own pasts, and crystallise in their present. I think of their environment as a fabric which tries to find its own shape, which with its tangled fibres wait for a final arrangement.’’ – Ákos Ezer, artist
MARCIN JASIK / PL
Canvases by Polish artist Marcin Jasik (*1990, Warsaw) explore the language of abstract painting. He also continues to work in photography and sculpture since graduating from the Painting Department of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. The artist draws inspiration from both his own experiences and the history of painting, by re-processing iconic images or motifs. His work is reductive, minimalist and concentrated.
GEORG PINTERITSCH / AT
The Austrian artist Georg Pinteritsch (*1986, Villach), who currently lives and works in Vienna, tackles existential issues and social developments through his use of highly symbolic motifs and art-historical iconographies, as well as his references of popular mass culture.
Don’t Miss the Awarded Artists’ Exhibitions
In addition to the donation of 15,000 euros for the main prize and 5,000 euros each for four recognition awards, the competition entries from all five award-winning artists will be presented in a dedicated award exhibition at STRABAG Artlounge, a showroom on the top floor of the Vienna headquarters of STRABAG SE. The exhibition will take place from 10.06.-19.08.2022.
To prepare their solo exhibitions and create new works, the awarded artists are also given the opportunity to work at STRABAG Artstudio, which offers accommodation and a place to work. A stay at the Artstudio supports the international networking and collaboration of the artists and contributes to the funding of young art from all over Europe.