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Ryan Trecartin Named Recipient of World's Largest Juried Individual Fine Art Prize
Ryan Trecartin, Installation View, Younger Than Jesus, New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, 2009. Courtesy of the artist.

PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Temple University’s Tyler School of Art announced that Ryan Trecartin had been named the recipient of the inaugural Jack Wolgin Fine Arts Prize, which recognizes the highest level of artistic excellence on an international level with a $150,000 cash prize. Jack Wolgin, who established the competition earlier this year at the Tyler School of Art, presented the prize to the artist at a reception in the presence of Temple University President Ann Weaver Hart, the three finalists and distinguished guests. The Jack Wolgin Fine Arts Prize is the world’s largest prize given to a visual artist in a juried competition. Ryan Trecartin was one of three finalists selected earlier this year from a group of fourteen nominees by a panel of three prominent art professionals.

“We congratulate Ryan Trecartin on being awarded the prize, and we hope that it will be of great benefit to him in his career development. Having Ryan as well as finalists, Sanford Biggers and Michael Rakowitz at Tyler School of Art for the Jack Wolgin Competition was a formidable honor and the whole campus feels energized by their presence and the presence of their work,” said President Hart. “We are also incredibly grateful to Mr. Wolgin for his vision and for his trust in Temple University. We look forward to many more competitions and prizes in years to come, and we know that they will contribute greatly to what we bring to Philadelphia.”

Ryan Trecartin (b. 1981, Webster, TX) lives and works in Philadelphia, PA, where he structures his art practice in varying collaborative ways. Trecartin has established a singular video practice that, in both form and in function, advances understandings of post-millennial technology, narrative and identity, and also propels these matters as expressive mediums. His work depicts worlds where consumer culture is amplified and absorbed to absurd or nihilistic proportions where characters circuitously strive to find agency and meaning in their lives. The combination of assaultive, nearly impenetrable avant-garde logics and equally outlandish, virtuoso uses of color, form, drama and montage produces a sublime, stream-of-consciousness effect that feels bewilderingly true to life. In addition to his work in video, Trecartin also has a collaborative sculpture practice with artist Lizzie Fitch. Trecartin’s work has been included in several major exhibitions and institutions worldwide, including the 2006 Whitney Biennial, New York; the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Saatchi Gallery, London; and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.

During the reception, a bust of Mr. Wolgin by Timothy Rusterholz, an MFA student at Tyler, was also unveiled and dedicated in recognition of his contributions to the University.

In celebration of the prize announcement, and in order to give students and the public more time to view works by the winner and the other finalists, the exhibition of the inaugural Jack Wolgin Competition finalists has been extended until November 14, 2009 at Temple Gallery.

Temple University's Tyler School of Art | Ryan Trecartin | Fine Art Prize | Jack Wolgin |

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