Applications for the 2024 grants open in December 2023.Please check this webpage in December again for further information.
Karolina Breguła, Eoghan Ryan and Tenzin Phuntsog win the Grants for 2023
In 2023, the Edith-Russ-Haus for Media Art awarded six-month work grants of 12,500 euro to three artists. Nearly 400 artists from all over the world applied for the grants, which have been sponsored by the Foundation of Lower Saxony since 2001.
Many of the works developed in Oldenburg through this program have gone on to be shown in international exhibitions and won various prizes. Through its generous support, the Foundation of Lower Saxony intends to encourage the development of both artists and the Edith-Russ-Haus itself, as one of the leading sites for media art in Germany. The institution is internationally known for its high-quality programming and stewarding of artistic creation, which it supports through both its international networks and local collaborations.
The jury, who reached their decision following an intense two-day discussion, consisted of Zdenka Badovinac, director of the Zagreb Museum of Contemporary Art; Gabriela Salgado, director of The Showroom in London; and Edit Molnár and Marcel Schwierin, co-directors of the Edith-Russ-Haus.
The 378 applications responding to the open call presented projects dealing with a wide range of pressing issues, such as intergenerational trauma, climate degradation, redressing neglected histories, and femicide linked to extractivist practices. A tone of loss and displacement dominated, along with a sense of a lack of belonging, an interest in new urban living, and diverse approaches to inter-species relations.
Karolina Breguła is a Polish artist working with film, photography, iInstallation, and performative actions. The central topic of Bregula’s proposal, Flood, also emerged in several other applications: the climate crisis, and in particular rising sea levels that will cause housing and employment insecurity across the planet. Breguła’s elaboration on the issue is exciting and promising, as it explores the experiences of various communities and the research into various scientific disciplines, all while connecting the lived experiences and personal fears of inhabitants across different geographies. Many of her previous film projects—which demonstrate a rich filmic language and elaborated conceptual approaches—are co-created with their protagonists and participants, blurring the borders between professional and amateur artistic activity. For this new project, the artist plans to collaborate with scientists and the residents of coastal cities and villages in Scandinavia, the Netherlands, Germany, Ireland, and Taiwan. The film will tell the pressing story of communities facing severe climate disturbance to their lives and livelihoods, encompassing short films on the past, current, and future predicaments of particular places, as well as photography and local performances. A book, collaboratively written by Breluga and the participants, will accompany the film.
Eoghan Ryan is an Irish artist working with moving image, installation, performance, puppetry, and drawing. His work explores collective and personal trauma, the relation between power and anarchy, and voluntary and involuntary behaviors, such as acting and reacting. Ryan’s project, Circle A, proposes to address various aspects of anarchy, both at an individual and social levels, and specifically in relation to the construction of artistic subjectivities. The jury was especially impressed with Ryan’s artistic language, which dares to disturb while delving into wider urgent political and societal discussions. Positioned from the perspective of the everyday, his work aims to destabilize by means of organized chaos and radical visual-poetry. The project will be divided into two intersecting works: a video installation within a specific viewing environment, and a slide projector installation. Circle A will elaborate on how art, theory, and its institutional structures can co-exist with moments of uprising, resistance, or revolt. The project will look at personal stories and group discussions regarding the broad relationship between anarchy and art, with the aim to nuance the notion of “anarchy” and explore its wider connotations.
Tenzin Phuntsog is a Tibetan American artist and filmmaker working across moving image, film, and installation. His practice touches on themes of presence and belonging as well as landscape and language. Phuntsog belongs to the first generation of Tibetan exiles born abroad and are unable to return to their homeland. As such, his work repeatedly deals with questions of dislocation, longing, and the collective imagination of home and its interrupted relation to identity. The work’s Oceans in the Sky central notion—“imagining vastness and depth,” in the artist’s words—will engage the visual possibilities and impossibilities that Tibetans face when coming into contact with the ocean, something they once could only imagine from within their land-locked country. Phuntsog's project further touches on themes of displacement through focusing on the presence of perceived and absent landscapes within the body. The jury found Phuntsog’s visual language refined and consistent, and offering special insight into the experience of time. His works capture an extended temporality in an attempt to portray his subjects’ embodiment of the present.
2023 | Karolina Breguła | Tenzin Phuntsog | Eoghan Ryan
Jury: Zdenka Badovinac, Edit Molnár, Gabriela Salgado, Marcel Schwierin
2019 | Kim Schön | Mario Pfeifer | Viktor Brim
Jury: Nav Haq, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin, Monika Szewczyk
2018 | Petra Bauer | Zach Blas | Daniel Jacoby
Jury: Charles Esche, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin, Joanna Sokołowska
2017 | Noor Afshan Mirza/Brad Butler | Stefan Panhans | Shirin Sabahi
Jury: Bassam El Baroni, Edit Molnár, Stefanie Schulte Strathaus, Marcel Schwierin
2016 | Doireann O'Malley | Zorka Wollny | Amir Yatziv
Jury: Sebastian Cichocki, Galit Eilat, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin
2015 | Mahmoud Khaled | Szabolcs KissPál | Anette Rose
Jury: Inke Arns, Nataša Ilic, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin
2007 | Jens Brand | Ellen Fellmann | Eddo Stern
Jury: Sabine Himmelsbach, Tom Holley, Christina Kubisch, Björn Melhus
2006 | Annina Rüst | Corinna Schnitt | ubermorgen.com
Jury: Susanne Binas-Preisendörfer, Michael Connor, Sabine Himmelsbach, Karin Ohlenschläger
2005 | Amie Siegel
Jury: Sabine Himmelsbach, Jan Schuijren, Paula von Sydow, Susanne Weirich
2002 | Johan Grimonprez | Dagmar Keller/Martin Wittwer | Florian Zeyfang
Jury: Rosanne Altstatt, Christoph Blase, Josephine Bosma, Linda Anne Engelhardt, Christoph Keller, Sarah Cook, Jens Thiele, Susanne Weirich
2001 | Susanne Weirich