ArtPrize Awards Concludes Event’s Fourth Annual Competition

ArtPrize, the radically open, international art competition and social experiment, tonight awarded $560,000 in cash prizes to the artists of 16 installations, concluding the 19-day event. Ten awards were decided in an epic, 16-day public voting process, while a panel of internationally renowned arts professionals decided six winners.

The top winners included Adonna Khare from Burbank, Calif. for her large-scale graphite on paper drawing, Elephants, which took the $200,000, publicly decided ArtPrize Award, and Design 99 from Detroit, Mich., for Displacement (13208 Klinger St), a found artifacts installation, which was awarded the first-ever, $100,000 Juried Grand Prize.

With its public voting and juried awards, ArtPrize 2012 explored the tension between the professional and populist in an epic conversation that was its largest to date. 47,160 people cast 412,560 votes in ArtPrize 2012, the largest voter base for an art competition ever. An estimated 400,000 total visitors came to Grand Rapids and experienced the fourth annual competition.

“The only way to discover good ideas is to generate lots of them by lots of people, and the ArtPrize Awards are designed to be a catalyst that help generate thousands of ideas,” said Rick DeVos founder and chairman of ArtPrize. “Our society needs more people to have ideas of all kinds, so we can make better things and make things better.”

Rounding out the top three public vote winners included Martijn van Wagtendonk of Colbert, Ga. for Song of Lift, a kinetic sculpture involving mechanical birds, light and Henryk Górecki’s Symphony No. 3, "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs;” and Frits Hoendervanger of Detroit, Mich. for his painting, Rebirth of Spring. Van Vagtendonk and Hoendervanger will receive $75,000 and $50,000, respectively.

“The experience of ArtPrize 2012 is that the opinions of people from all backgrounds are respected with arts professionals and the public standing on equal ground,” added DeVos.

Before the 2012 event, ArtPrize significantly increased the stature of the awards decided by a panel of jurors. Each juror was responsible for narrowing the long list of 1,517 artists to five, and then selecting a winner.

Juried award winners, who each received $20,000 include:

Two-Dimensional Alois Kronschlaeger Brooklyn, N.Y. Habitat
Three-Dimensional ABCD 83 Chicago, Ill. More or Less
Time/Performance Complex Movements Detroit, Mich. Three Phases
Urban Space Dale Rogers Haverhill, Ma. Flight
Venue Paul Amenta Grand Rapids, Mich. SiTE:LAB
Ox-Bow Residency Ann Morton Phoenix, Ariz. Collective Cover Project

The jury panel included:

Juried Grand Prize Jerry Saltz Senior Art Critic, New York Magazine
  Tom Eccles Director, Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College
  Theaster Gates Chicago-based artist and community activist
Two-Dimensional Work Tyler Green Editor, Modern Art Notes; Columnist, Modern Painters
Three-Dimensional Work Lisa Frieman Chair, Contemporary Department, Indianapolis Museum of Art
Time/Performance-Based Work Cathy Edwards Director of Performance Programs, the International Festival of Arts & Ideas
Use of Urban Space Susan Szenasy Editor in Chief, Metropolis magazine
Outstanding Venue Tom Eccles Director, Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College

The remaining popular vote award winners, who each received $5,000, included:

Name Hometown, State Title
Richard Morse Fennville, Mich. Stick-to-it-ive-ness: Unwavering pertinacity; perseverance
Mark Carpenter, Dan Johnson Grand Rapids, Mich. Lights in the Night
Dan Heffron Traverse City, Mich. Life in Wood
Kumi Yamashita Brooklyn, N.Y. Origami
Dennis Harris Marlette, Mich. The Chase
Sandra Bryant Lynden, Wa. Return to Eden
Chris LaPorte Grand Rapids, Mich. City Band

ArtPrize 2012 began Sept. 19 with 1,517 installations by 1,717 artists from 46 countries and 41 U.S. states and territories. Each coordinated independently with one of 161 venues within a three-square-mile district in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Hundreds of thousands of people made their way to Grand Rapids to create a critical dialog about contemporary art. For more information, including a complete list of artists and their corresponding venues, visit

About ArtPrize
The ArtPrize event is a radically open, international art competition and social experiment. It invites artists to try out new ideas on a large and diverse population of people. It seeks to broaden the critical dialog around contemporary art by awarding the world’s largest art prize, at $560,000. Registered artists and venues match themselves at, and the public votes for the winners using mobile devices and the Web.  ArtPrize 2012 included 1,517 entries from 46 countries and 41 U.S. states and territories, as well as 400,000 active participants. Since its inception, individuals of all backgrounds have cast more than 1.6 million votes for public art.

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Brian Burch
c 616-828-9813

By Brian Burch on