Tiphanie Kim Mall (*1987) is the winner of the 2020 Helvetia Art Prize. She holds a Master's degree from the FHNW Academy of Art and Design Basel. The jury was impressed at how Tiphanie Kim Mall captures the social dynamics of relationships with her camera and also calls into question the biases that observation and documentation can entail. How can a person's private sphere be filmed and how does filming stage reality?
For her latest film work House Cat (2020), which is being shown at the Plattform 20 exhibition at the Kunsthalle Fribourg Fri Art, Tiphanie Kim Mall attached a camera to her cat's collar. We follow the house cat over a period of almost six months. We view the surroundings and individual parts of rooms from the cat's perspective. The cat's white whiskers in the frame serve as a constant indication that we are following the gaze of this independent animal which determines the dynamics and pace within the individual sequences. We accompany the cat as it moves through the apartment because the camera allows us to monitor the pet and understand its behaviour patterns. The fact that a person and an animal share their daily routine becomes particularly clear in those moments when the cat observes the artist at work in her atelier. The camera reveals both everyday and supposedly intimate moments and shows how not only the pet but also the artist become the object of observation. The video work thus opens up an ambivalent balancing act between documentation and observation.
Tiphanie Kim Mall's films are characterized by her undisguised, direct view of herself – a view that the artist reflects back on to herself again in this context. Viewed on a screen on the wall, we ultimately ask the question: who is watching whom here? The video work by Tiphanie Kim Mall can be seen at the Plattform20 exhibition at the Fri Art Kunsthalle Fribourg from 8 until 23 August 2020.
This year's Helvetia Art Prize jury comprises Nicolas Brulhart (Artistic Director Fri Art, Kunsthalle Fribourg), Julian Denzler (Curator Museum zu Allerheiligen Schaffhausen), Ines Goldbach (Director Kunsthaus Baselland), Joanna Kamm (Director LISTE Art Fair Basel), Andreas Karcher (Head of Helvetia's Art Department), Nathalie Loch (Curator of Helvetia's Art Department) and Karine Tissot (Art and Culture Manager CHUV Lausanne).
Start-up assistance as part of cultural commitment
With the Art Prize, Helvetia Insurance supports young artists at the beginning of their career. The Helvetia Art Prize is aimed at the graduates of Swiss universities of applied sciences in the field of fine arts and media art. The prize is a double form of assistance: on the one hand, the winner receives prize money of 15,000 francs, and, on the other hand, the opportunity to present his or her work to an international specialist audience and the general public with a solo exhibition at the LISTE Art Fair Basel. The art fair will be held from 17-20 September 2020 at the Dreispitzhalle in cooperation with the Kunsthaus Baselland. Since being founded in 1996, the LISTE has been committed to actively promoting galleries and artists in the young and middle generations.
The Helvetia Art Prize is a key aspect of the international insurance group's commitment to art. The prize has been awarded each year since 2004. Initially known as the Nationale Suisse Art Prize, it has been named the Helvetia Art Prize since the merger of Helvetia and Nationale Suisse. Helvetia, which also insures art, has one of the most important collections of contemporary Swiss art, stretching back more than 70 years. The collection focuses on paintings, drawings and photography. Since 2015 Helvetia has had its own, publicly accessible display space in the form of the Helvetia Art Foyer at its head office in Basel. Here, thematic exhibitions featuring works from its own collection or solo presentations by artists are staged.
The film House Cat by Tiphanie Kim Mall can be seen from 8 until 23 August 2020 at the Fri Art Kunsthalle Fribourg as part of the Plattform20 exhibition.
8 – 23 August 2020
Monday and Tuesday; by prior appointment
Wednesday to Friday: 12 – 6 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 1 – 6 p.m.
Fri Art Kunsthalle