French artist Valérie Belin has been announced as the winner of the 6th edition of Prix Pictet under the theme ‘Disorder’, by former UN Secretary General and Honorary President of the Prix Pictet Kofi Annan. With a value of CHF 100,000 (approx. £66,000) sponsored by the Pictet Group in Switzerland, the prize is attributed every year to a photographer whose work confronts pressing social and environmental challenges.
Belin was selected for her photographic series Still Life (2014), depicting unsettling contemporary still-lifes with mass consumer objects in the genre of the vanitas or memento mori, that 'offer a jarring commentary on the effects of our obsession with cheap objects, for not only is their material, plastic, emblematic of the wasteful use of raw materials, but it also represents a grotesque kind of immortality because of its non-biodegradable nature – an immortality that, one could say, is slowly killing the planet.’
Belin, along with the eleven shortlisted artists, are on show in Disorder, at Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, through 13 December 2015. The show will then travel to MAXXI, Rome, and other international institutions (more details here).
13 November 2015.