Max Mara Art Prize for Women Shortlist: Onyeka Igwe

Portrait of Onyeka Igwe by Yasmin Akim

Onyeka Igwe (b. 1986)

Onyeka Igwe is an artist and researcher working between cinema and installation, born and based in London, UK. Through her work, Onyeka is animated by the question ‘how do we live together?’ with particular interest in the ways the sensorial, spatial and non-canonical ways of knowing can provide answers to this question. She uses embodiment, archives, narration and text to create structural ‘figure-of-eights’, a form that exposes a multiplicity of narratives.

Igwe’s works have been shown in the UK and internationally at film festivals and galleries. Solo exhibitions include The Miracle on George Green, The High Line (New York, USA, 2022); a so-called archive, LUX (London, UK, 2021); THE REAL STORY IS WHAT’S IN THAT ROOM, Mercer Union (Toronto, Canada, 2021); There Were Two Brothers, Jerwood Arts (London, UK, 2019) and Corrections, with Aliya Pabani, Trinity Square Video (Toronto, Canada, 2018). Recent group exhibitions include Echoes, Haus der Kunst (Munich, Germany, 2022); Reconfigured, Timothy Taylor (New York, USA, 2021); Archives of Resistance, Neue Galerie (Innsbruck, Austria, 2021); New Labor Movements, McEvoy Foundation for the Arts (San Francisco, USA, 2021), and Production Series, KW Institute for Contemporary Art (Berlin, Germany, 2020).

The artist has forthcoming commissions with The Common Guild, FLAMIN Productions and is collaborating with Huw Lemmey on his exhibition at Studio Voltaire, London. She was awarded the New Cinema Award at Berwick Film and Media Arts Festival in 2019 (UK), the 2020 Arts Foundation Fellowship Award for Experimental Film (UK), the 2021 Foundwork Artist Prize (USA) and has been nominated for the 2022 Jarman Award (UK).