Art Market

The Brooklyn Museum awarded John Edmonds the inaugural UOVO Prize.

Nate Freeman
Jul 10, 2019 4:40PM, via Brooklyn Museum
John Edmonds
Modernity, 2018
Simon Lee Gallery

Earlier this year, the Brooklyn Museum announced it would be initiating an annual award for emerging artists called the UOVO Prize, supported by the New York-based art storage company of the same name. The catch: the artist has to live in or maintain a studio in Brooklyn.

On Tuesday, the museum announced the first recipient of the award will be John Edmonds, a photographer whose work is currently on view in the 2019 Whitney Biennial. The prize comes with $25,000, as well as a solo show at the Brooklyn Museum in the fall of 2019. Additionally, Edmonds will have a 50-foot-by-50-foot public installation at UOVO’s new storage facility in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bushwick.

And Edmonds—who in the words of the release is “best known for his sensitive depictions of young Black men” and in his practice “uses a large-format camera to heighten the staging of his subjects and explore their sculptural potential”—said in a statement:

Living and working in Brooklyn has deeply impacted and inspired my practice. [. . .] I’m thrilled to work with the staff at the Brooklyn Museum and have my first solo museum presentation in the borough I call home.

It will not be the artist’s first time showing at the institution. His work is currently included in “Nobody Promised You Tomorrow: Art 50 Years After Stonewall,” which is on view at the Brooklyn Museum until December 8th. One of his works from the Whitney Biennial also served to illustrate an opinion piece published by the New York Times last week, in which Elizabeth Méndez Berry and Chi-hui Yang argued for the urgent need to diversify the field of cultural criticism.

Nate Freeman