Pitch Night Louisville Winner to Install Monumental “Meta-Moment” to Inspire the Mystery, Curiosity and Creativity of Human Imagination

Leticia Bajuyo awarded a $5,000 grant for her “Gaze-bo(ught)” Installation, an infinite series of gazebos for historic Lyon Square during the 19-day event this fall.

GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan, JUNE 1, 2016 -- ArtPrize, the radically open international art competition decided equally by public vote and expert jury, in partnership with 21c Museum Hotels and Delta Air Lines tonight announced the Pitch Night Louisville winning entry. Gaze-bo(ught) by Leticia Bajuyo earned the highest consideration of the five judges, including Alice Gray Stites, 21c Museum Hotel Chief Curator and Museum Director who previously served as the Outstanding Venue Juror at ArtPrize 2013. The installation took home a $5,000 cash grant as well as an historic venue in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids during ArtPrize Eight, slated to take place from September 21-October 9, 2016.

“The playful colors will be a beacon drawing visitors to Lyon Square where they will dive deep into a contemplation of not only the work but an interior contemplation of both the historic site and the context of ArtPrize,” said Stites who announced Bajuyo’s achievement in front of a capacity crowd within one of 21c Louisville’s main galleries.  

Bajuyo’s work was selected from among five artists and artist collectives that were invited to present at tonight’s Pitch Night event. Each artist was given five minutes and five slides to sell their ambitious, site-specific installation idea to a panel of local arts professionals including: Chris Radtke, artist and co-owner of Zephyr Gallery, Partner at IDEAS xLab; Chris Reitz, Assistant Professor, Critical and Curatorial Studies & Gallery Director, Hite Art Institue of the University of Louisville; Daniel Pfalzgraf, Curator at the Carnegie Center for Art & History; Joey Yates, Associate Curator of the Kentucky Museum of Art & Craft; and Alice Gray Stites, 21c Museum Hotels Chief Curator and Museum Director.

“The magic, mystery, curiosity and creativity that imagination generates is vital to humanity,” said Bajuyo about the work. “Human creativity and imagination is something that is needed in history, in culture, economic development and especially education.”

The Kentucky-based artist’s work intends to build a monumental “meta-moment” similar to a play within a play, or an infinite series of photographs that question one’s own existence amongst time and space. In addition to the infinite series of bubble-gum pink gazebos providing an air of leisure, desire and romanticised fantasy; Bajuyo will install a carnivalesque merchant cart to return viewers to the conflicting realities of commerce, trade and contemporary art.

Bajuyo’s work often engages a metaphysical narrative by disrupting one’s sense of scale through playful and elegant presentation of familiar objects.

“The size and scale of shrinking objects make us feel both controlled and in-control, vast and independent while being both small and introspective simultaneously,” said Bajuyo of her previous work and of how she intends ArtPrize viewers to respond to her upcoming installation.

ArtPrize Pitch Night launched in 2013 as a means of discovering and supporting ambitious, exciting projects and to reduce the barriers to bringing them to the annual competition. Since its inception, the Pitch Night program has continued to expand and in 2016 includes events at 21c Museum Hotels in both Durham, NC and Louisville, KY; the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, MN; and the Indianapolis Museum of Art in Indianapolis, IN. Each event will award the winning artist $5,000 and a spot in a prominent ArtPrize venue during the eighth annual event.

ArtPrize Eight will take place across downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan from September 21-October 9, 2016. Artist registration for the world’s largest art competition is now open through June 9.

Photo (left to right): Chris Reitz, Daniel Pfalzgraf, Chris Radtke, Leticia Bajuyo, Alice Gray Stites, and Joey Yates

By Jaenell Woods on