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Abigail Reynolds is awarded the next BMW Art Journey. British artist to visit lost libraries of the Silk Road.

Munich/Basel. Art Basel and BMW are pleased to present British artist Abigail Reynolds (represented by ROKEBY, London) as the next BMW Art Journey winner. The international jury selected her unanimously from a shortlist of three artists whose works were exhibited in the Discoveries sector at this year’s Art Basel show in Hong Kong.

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Munich/Basel. Art Basel and BMW are pleased to present British artist Abigail Reynolds (represented by ROKEBY, London) as the next BMW Art Journey winner. The international jury selected her unanimously from a shortlist of three artists whose works were exhibited in the Discoveries sector at this year’s Art Basel show in Hong Kong. 

Abigail Reynolds’ artistic practice is closely linked to books and libraries. Having studied English Literature at Oxford University, she frequently draws inspiration from literary essays and figures to imagine places and moments from the past, present and future. Given this deep connection to libraries and literature, it is no surprise that Reynolds’ BMW Art Journey project for 2016/17, “The Ruins of Time: Lost Libraries of the Silk Road,” will allow her to connect the complex religious and secular narratives of Europe and Asia and to expand her current interests and working methods through an extensive multi-continent series of visits to historic and fabled repositories of books. The artist will trace sixteen sites of libraries lost to political conflicts, looters, natural catastrophes and war. Conceptually, Abigail Reynolds intends to explore blanks and voids, with the library symbolising the impossibility of encompassing all knowledge. “The research I have done towards this journey privileges the known,” the artist stated in her proposal for the Art Journey, “but it will bring me to question what we understand as knowledge. I do not want to embark on a history lesson, but on a philosophical journey.” 

Along the way, Reynolds will gather representations in various forms: 3D scans, photography, microscope imagery, written text, plans or cataloguing systems. Based on this extensive research, she intends to create a cluster of book forms, prints, collages and moving-image works, the latter being her first attempt to work in this medium. Images, texts and other documents originating from the experience will, after its conclusion, be included in a book – thus completing a journey that both starts and ends with the institution of the library. 

The experts conducting the judging were Richard Armstrong, Director Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Claire Hsu, Director Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong; Matthias Mühling, Director Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, Munich; Bose Krishnamachari, President Kochi-Muziris Biennale, India; and Pauline J. Yao, Curator Visual Art M+, Hong Kong. 

In a joint statement, the five-member international jury said about their unanimous selection: “Abigail Reynolds submitted a monumental, poetic and memorable proposal. Her articulate project links the contemporary to ancient history by researching the phenomenon of destroyed libraries, which has existed for thousands of years. Her journey will take her along segments of the Silk Road, which has not lost any of its political and cultural resonance. It will be fascinating to see where this ambitious journey – which is so thoroughly rooted in her practice of translating literary materials into visual language – will take her, both physically and creatively.” 

In addition to Abigail Reynolds, the shortlisted artists from the Discoveries sector for emerging artists at Art Basel in Hong Kong included: Newsha Tavakolian with Thomas Erben Gallery, New York, and Alvin Zafra presented by Artinformal, Mandaluyong City. 

The BMW Art Journey is a global collaboration between Art Basel and BMW, created to recognize and support emerging artists worldwide. This unique award is open to artists who are exhibiting in the Discoveries and Positions sectors in the Hong Kong and Miami Beach shows of Art Basel, respectively. Two judging panels comprised of internationally renowned experts meet first to select a shortlist of three artists from the sector, who are then invited to submit proposals for a journey aimed to further develop their ideas and artistic work. The jury reconvenes to choose a winner from the three proposals. The next round of selections for the BMW Art Journey will take place during Art Basel in Miami Beach.  

BMW is a global partner of Art Basel and has supported Art Basel’s three shows in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong for many years. 

Art Basel and BMW will collaborate with the artists to document the journey and share it with a broader public through print publications, online and social media.

For further information about the artists and the project, please visit:
www.bmw-art-journey.com

For further questions please contact:
Dr Thomas Girst

BMW Group Corporate and Intergovernmental Affairs

Head of Cultural Engagement

Telephone: +49-89-382-24753

www.press.bmwgroup.com;
E-mail: presse@bmw.de

 

Dorothee Dines

Art Basel

Head of Media Relations

Telephone: + 41 58 206 27 06

Email: dorothee.dines@artbasel.com

 

About Abigail Reynolds
Based in Cornwall, UK, Abigail Reynolds read English Literature at Oxford University before pursuing Fine Art at Goldsmiths University. Her interest in books prompts her collages, sculptures, films and printmaking. The ideas driving Reynolds’ work are based on images from reportage photography books, her interest in networks of association and how our sense of time is affected by technology. Represented by ROKEBY (London), she has exhibited at art institutions and galleries in London, Vienna, Los Angeles, Seattle, Berlin and Eindhoven.

About Art Basel

Art Basel stages the world's premier art shows for Modern and contemporary works, sited in Basel, Miami Beach, and Hong Kong. Defined by its host city and region, each show is unique, which is reflected in its participating galleries, artworks presented, and the content of parallel programming produced in collaboration with local institutions for each edition. In addition to ambitious stands featuring leading galleries from around the globe, each show's exhibition sectors spotlight the latest developments in the visual arts, offering visitors new ideas and new inspiration. For further information, please visit artbasel.com 

About BMW Group’s Cultural Commitment
For almost 50 years now, the BMW Group has initiated and engaged in over 100 cultural cooperations worldwide. The company places the main focus of its long-term commitment on contemporary and modern art, classical music and jazz as well as architecture and design. In 1972, three large-scale paintings were created by the artist Gerhard Richter specifically for the foyer of the BMW Group's Munich headquarters. Since then, artists such as Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, Daniel Barenboim, Jonas Kaufmann and architect Zaha Hadid have co-operated with BMW. Currently, female artist Cao Fei from China and American John Baldessari are creating the next two vehicles for the BMW Art Car Collection. Besides co-initiatives, such as BMW Tate Live, the BMW Art Journey and the “Opera for All” concerts in Berlin, Munich and London, the company also partners with leading museums and art fairs as well as orchestras and opera houses around the world. The BMW Group takes absolute creative freedom in all its cultural activities – as this initiative is as essential for producing groundbreaking artistic work as it is for major innovations in a successful business. 

Further information: www.bmwgroup.com/culture and www.bmwgroup.com/culture/overview  

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BMW-Group-Culture-925330854231870/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bmwgroupculture/

@BMWGroupCulture

#BMWGroupCulture 

The BMW Group
With its three brands BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. As a global company, the BMW Group operates 31 production and assembly facilities in 14 countries and has a global sales network in more than 140 countries. 

In 2015, the BMW Group sold approximately 2.247 million cars and nearly 137,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax for the financial year 2015 was approximately € 9.22 billion on revenues amounting to € 92.18 billion. As of 31 December 2015, the BMW Group had a workforce of 122,244 employees. 

The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.

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