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Installation view of Damián Ortega, Controller of the Universe, 2008, at MoMA PS1, Long Island City, New York. Courtesy of the ICA, Miami.
Installation view of Damián Ortega, Controller of the Universe, 2008, at MoMA PS1, Long Island City, New York. Courtesy of the ICA, Miami.

ICA Miami Awards Inaugural Sculpture Prize to Damián Ortega

The Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Miami, has launched a new annual sculpture prize, which was made possible through the support of the Ezratti family, whose $500,000 gift will fund the initiative. The honor will be awarded to artists who have made exceptional contributions to the medium of sculpture. The Mexico City–based artist Damián Ortega was named the inaugural recipient of the prize. Ortega will receive $15,000 and a commission. His new work, Replicant Stone, will debut at the institution in November.

“ICA Miami plays an important role in enabling artists to pursue their most innovative and ambitious projects, with large-scale sculptural commissions serving as a core element of our year-round programming,” said artistic director Alex Gartenfeld. “We are deeply grateful to the Ezrattis for their visionary support in the creation of this prize, which allows ICA Miami to deepen and build upon this history of championing the creation of new works. As an artist known for his pioneering contributions to sculpture, Damián embodies the commitment to experimentation and excellence.”

Born in Mexico City in 1967, Ortega produces large-scale installations, sculptures, performances, and films that often grapple with the interdependence of components that make up complex systems, whether they be parts of a machine or a social system. After working for a stint as a political cartoonist, he joined Gabriel Orozco’s workshop Taller de Los Viernes from 1987 to 1992. In 2005, he was awarded the Hugo Boss Prize. Ortega has participated in group exhibitions such as “Art and Space” (2018) at the Guggenheim Bilbao, the fourteenth Biennale de Lyon (2017), the Sharjah Biennial 12 (2015), and the fifty-fifth and fiftieth editions of the Venice Biennale (2013 and 2003).

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