Dora Akunyili’s daughter wins major art prize

Late Prof. Dora Akunyili’s daughter, Njideka Akunyili Crosby has been awarded the Prix Canson Prize by Fonds Canson in a ceremony held at New York’s Drawing Center on Tuesday, June 21.

The Nigerian artist won the annual prize which recognizes achievements of international artists who work with paper as their major medium.

The Enugu-born Njideka – who is based in Los Angeles – makes intimate paintings on paper through her intricate collage of photographs transferred to paper with patches acrylic, charcoal, and other materials.

Crosby with her 2011 work The Thing Around Her Neck, 2011.HAL HOROWITZ/PRIX CANSON

“I think her work really moved us. We felt like if you are going to give a prize to someone you give it to someone who is going to push the medium forward”, Brett Littman, the president of the jury and the director of the Drawing Center told artforum.com about how they decided on Njideka as the winner.

The rewards for her winning the prize are – a solo show, €10,000 (about $11,300) worth of Canson paper, a purchase of one of her pieces by the Fonds Canson as well a residency program at the home of the late artist Tunga, who was a member of the jury but died earlier this month.

The other finalists for this year’s prize were Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze, Bethany Collins, David Shrigley, and Lucy Skaer.

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