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Catherine Anyango Grünewald wins 2nd edition of the Navigator Art on Paper Prize

Catherine Anyango Grünewald is the winner of the 2nd edition of The Navigator Art on Paper Prize.

The artist is currently a lecturer at Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts and Design, in Stockholm. She studied at Central Saint Martins and at the Royal College of Art, in London, and holds an MA in Modern Literature by University College London.

One of the core themes in her work is public space and how it is affected by traumatic events. Through her drawings, Catherine Anyango Grünewald tries to rewrite stories and events that may shed light on invisible structures of power and violence.

The artist has chosen to work with charcoal on paper given the democratic nature of this common tool, particularly in non-artistic contexts. In her work, charcoal is applied with violence on the paper, scoring and marking it almost to the limit of its integrity, in drawings that reflect grief and a possibility of redemption. Catherine Anyango Grünewald uses a rubber as a tool to delete but also to create a new utopia upon the new void that it opens up on the sheet of paper.

‘I am very keen on the potential of the properties of pencil and paper to convey sensitive and complex themes, as well as on the relationship between materials and meaning’, the artist mentions about her work, adding that ‘at a certain moment in our lives, most of us have used pencil on paper as a means of self-expression, both to take down notes and to sketch. That is how we learn. I hope that the use of such democratic and everyday materials may offer viewers a point of access into themes that are hard’.

Catherine Anyango Grünewald’s drawings use two textures of graphite to create, according to the artist, ‘a simultaneously matt and shiny surface resembling photographic negatives’. Given their changing relationship with light, ‘we should observe them almost forensically, moving to capture the light and, with it, details and clues’, she adds.    

Her work can be seen at the Navigator Art on Paper Exhibition from 17 May to 1 June at Sociedade Nacional de Belas Artes. The opening will be on 16 May at 9pm. The show also brings together a selection of works by the finalists to the 2nd edition of the Navigator Art on Paper Prize – Abu Bakarr Mansaray (Seirra Leone), Andrea Bowers (USA), Maria Berrio (Colombia) and Mateo López (Colombia).

The Exhibition will be open Monday to Friday, from noon to 7pm, and on Saturdays from 2 to 8 pm. The Exhibition coincides with Arco Lisboa and is part of a programme including complementary visits and talks. Free admission. 

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