HONG KONG — The Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize 2021 is pleased to announce its shortlist of 33 artworks. The winner of the Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize 2021 will be revealed at the Award Ceremony on Tuesday, 8 June 2021, followed by the Auction Day on Thursday, 24 June 2021. Artworks will be showcased in an exhibition open to the public at the Goethe-Institut Hong Kong from 7 June 2021, until 30 June 2021, with a virtual walkthrough of the exhibition to be made accessible on Justice Centre Hong Kong and Goethe-Institut Hongkong’s webites.
Now in its seventh edition, the Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize 2021 is co-hosted by Justice Centre Hong Kong and the European Union Office to Hong Kong and Macao, and supported by the Goethe Institut Hongkong. The exhibition is curated by KY Wong and will be judged by an international panel made up of Chantal Wong, Director of Culture, Eaton Workshop Hong Kong, Christy Chow, Hong Kong-based artist and 2017 Prize winner, Grace Cheng, Director of Art in Hospital and Community Art Network, Dr. Kacey Wong, prominent Hong Kong-based artist, Katherine Vajda, Australian photographic artist, 2014 Prize winner and former Prize Co-Director, and Peter Augustus, Dallas-based artist, founder of PAO Projects Gallery, and former Prize Co-Director.
Each shortlisted work has been selected for its unique and insightful exploration of human rights, both at home and abroad, from the 93 artworks submitted. Established and emerging Hong Kong artists are represented in the shortlist with a diverse range of media and subject matters including but not limited to the treatment of minorities in Hong Kong, the global refugee crisis, mental health and LGBTIQ rights.
The selected works are by artists that come from diverse ethnic backgrounds, including refugees, with their own unique experiences with human rights issues, ready to share their stories with the world under this year’s theme of ‘Shared Future’. In line with the organisers’ commitment to diversity and inclusion, the judging was conducted without the jury knowing the artists’ age, experience, gender, name or nationality.
Celebrating the extraordinary resilience shown by all forced migrants with the hope to shed light on a shared peaceful, dignified future for migrants and all, the Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize is one of the few events in the city that honours the power of art as a catalyst for social change and the defence of human dignity. The winner of the Prize will receive one of Asia’s most prestigious art awards alongside a cash prize of HKD35,000. Two runners-up will each receive prizes of HKD7,500 and HKD5,000, respectively. The InkluVision Award, financed by Goethe-Institut Hongkong, will be presented to an artwork that advocates an inclusive society without limitations and defines inspiring visions alongside a cash prize of HKD9,000. Following its first appearance in 2020, we are pleased to once again have a separately judged student category for young artists to showcase their talents. The final award category is the Justice Centre Hong Kong Choice Award, presented to the artist whose work best reflects the organisation’s mission to protect the rights of Hong Kong’s most vulnerable with a cash prize of HKD2,500.
Subject to public health rules and opening hours of the Goethe-Institut Hongkong, the exhibition will be open to the public from 7 June 2021 to 30 June 2021. While the public could visit the exhibition between 9am and 1pm on 7 June 2021, the exhibition will be closed in the afternoon on the same day. The Winner Announcements and Award Ceremony on 8 June 2021 will be live-streamed online, with details to be announced soon.
Each of the exhibited works will be available for purchase via auction, with 80% of all proceeds supporting the prize and non-profit human rights work of Justice Centre Hong Kong. The auction of the finalist artworks will take place in-person on 24 June 2021. All other shortlisted artworks will be available for auction online and accessible from around the world, with details to be announced soon. The Prize relies on generous donations from the public and interested parties to remain sustainable and tax-ductible donations to the crowdfunding campaign can be made at http://Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize 2021.
“We are very grateful for all the support from the Hong Kong community over the years and are appreciative for the opportunity to bring this important platform for the arts community back again. Art and human rights have a long history and we have seen powerful art come out of difficult times. Day to day, we work with refugees and survivors of torture, human trafficking and forced labour, and we hope that the art through this year’s shortlist continues to spark discussion around these issues, and other injustices,” says Melanie McLaren, Executive Director, Justice Centre Hong Kong.
“The European Union Office to Hong Kong and Macao is pleased to co-host this meaningful event for the fifth consecutive year. The European Union is committed to supporting human rights across the world in all possible ways. The Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize brings together the creativity and talent of local artists with our support for human rights and human dignity, to raise awareness and defend our shared universal values,” says Ambassador Thomas Gnocchi, the Head of the European Union to Hong Kong and Macao.
“Human rights are universal, and this prestigious competition helps remind us all of that. This year the theme is “Shared Future” and the focus is on an inclusive society where refugees, vulnerable minorities and people with disabilities are as welcome and respected as everyone else. The Goethe-Institut is proud to be a partner of HKHRAP once again and looks forward to showing the exhibition at the Goethe Gallery,” says Dr. Almuth Meyer-Zollitsch, Director, Goethe-Institut Hongkong.
The Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize continues to engage all sectors of the community and works with artists, institutions, media, galleries and corporations to raise awareness and funds for the front-line work of Justice Centre Hong Kong. The non-profit human rights organisation works to protect the rights of Hong Kong’s most vulnerable forced migrants – refugees, survivors of torture, forced labour and human trafficking and continues to bring their voices alive with the Hong Kong Human Rights Arts Prize.