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Derrick Adams Wins Studio Museum’s 2016 Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize


Derrick Adams.


The Studio Museum in Harlem announced that it has awarded its Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize to New York–based artist Derrick Adams. The prize comes with an award of $50,000 in cash.

Adams’s work ranges from photography, works on paper, and sculpture to video and performance, and “focuses on the fragmentation and manipulation of structure and surface, exploring self-image and forward projection,” according to his website. He has been included in several group exhibitions at the Studio Museum, as well as MoMA PS1’s 2005 edition of “Greater New York” and three iterations of Performa, New York’s performance art biennial.

Adams had a solo exhibition at Pioneer Works this past summer, and was included in the “Tete-a-Tete” group exhibition at Aperture, which was curated by Mickalene Thomas and was presented alongside Thomas’s solo exhibition at the gallery.

The Wein Prize has been awarded annually since it was established in 2006 by jazz impresario and philanthropist George Wein in memory of his wife, who was a longtime trustee of the Studio Museum. It is given to “an African-American artist of great innovation and promise,” according to the museum. Previous winners include Lorna Simpson (2006), Trenton Doyle Hancock (2007), and Njideka Akunyili Crosby (2015).

The news was announced by Studio Museum director Thelma Golden at the museum’s annual gala, which raised over $2 million for its exhibitions and programming. The night’s event also honored the Ford Foundation and its president, Darren Walker, for its continued support to the museum. “The Ford Foundation has helped us build our capacity; it’s allowed us to engage deeply in important programs; and it has created the opportunity for us to think about the museum in broad and different ways,” Golden said in a statement.

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