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The prize will be awarded at each showing of the Gwangju Biennale beginning in April next year.

Gwangju Biennale Announces $100,000 Park Seo-Bo Art Prize

From left: GIZI Foundation Chairman Park Seong-ho, artist Park Seo-Bo, Gwangju Biennale Foundation President Park Yang-woo at the prize's signing ceremony. Courtesy Gwangju Biennale Foundation.

The Gwangju Biennale Foundation and the GIZI Foundation have announced a new US $100,000 prize to be awarded at the Gwangju Biennale beginning with the 14th edition next year.

The Gwangju Biennale Park Seo-Bo Art Prize is named for the artist widely considered the godfather of Korean contemporary art. Born in 1931, Park Seo-Bo is celebrated for his contribution to Dansaekhwa, the Korean monochromatic painting movement that emerged in the mid-1970s.

'As an elder who has devoted an entire life to painting and also as a fellow member of the arts community, I wanted to support artists participating in the Gwangju Biennale,' said Park Seo-Bo. 'I hope that despite the difficulties that lie ahead, they continue, with a sense of duty as an artist, to be a positive influence on society and improve it,' he said.

The GIZI Foundation, which was founded with funding from Park Seo-Bo in 2019, has committed US $1 million to sustain the prize until 2042.

'Since Korea was nothing more than a barren land, Park Seo-Bo has been at the forefront of Korean modern arts bringing forth Dansaekhwa to the world,' said Gwangju Biennale Foundation President Park Yang-woo. 'His unwavering conviction as an artist aligned with our mission to become a gateway for local artists to enter the global stage, which led to the establishment of this award.'

'I hope that the Gwangju Biennale Park Seo-Bo Art Prize will provide artists who are dedicating their life to creative works with strength and support, and over time, revitalise the whole art community,' Park Yang-woo added.

The 14th edition of the Gwangju Biennale will be led by artistic director Sook-Kyung Lee, Senior Curator of International Art at Tate Modern. With the exhibition, Lee said she aims to 'create a message unique to Gwangju based on the spirits of the city and its Biennale, with a commitment to a non-Western perspective.' —[O]

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