Iwona Blazwick, former Director of Whitechapel Gallery, announced Emma Talbot as the winner of the 8th edition of the Max Mara Art Prize for Women at Whitechapel Gallery on Tuesday 10th March 2020.
The shortlisted artists were: Allison Katz, Katie Schwab, Tai Shani, Emma Talbot and Hanna Tuulikki.
The shortlist was selected by a panel of judges including:
Florence Ingleby, Gallerist, Ingleby Gallery, Edinburgh
Chantal Joffe, Artist
Hettie Judah, Art Critic
Fatima Maleki, Collector
Emma Talbot (b. 1969, UK) lives and works in London. Her work in drawing, painting, installation and sculpture explores the inner landscape of personal thought, emotion and narrative. These individual subjectivities are then cast into wider narratives, addressing prevalent contemporary concerns. Her work is often hand-drawn or painted onto silk or other textiles, and incorporates her own writing or quotes from other sources. It explores the personal as political, social politics, gender, the natural world, and our intimacy with technology and language.
Talbot’s winning proposal for the Max Mara Art Prize for Women questions deeply rooted positions of power, governance, attitudes to nature and representations of women, through an acutely personal lens. It takes as a starting point Gustav Klimt’s painting Three Ages of Woman (1905), which features a naked elderly woman standing in apparent shame. Talbot intends to animate the figure of the older woman as someone with agency, who overcomes a series of trials similar to The Twelve Labors of Hercules. Through her modern-day trials, she will invest the woman with the potential to reconstruct contemporary society, countering prevalent negative attitudes to ageing.