Christopher Sims Awarded Arte Laguna Prize

Jihad Lamp, Fort Polk, Louisiana. 2006. From "Theater of War: The Pretend Villages of Iraq and Afghanistan." By Christopher Sims.

Jihad Lamp, Fort Polk, Louisiana. 2006. From “Theater of War: The Pretend Villages of Iraq and Afghanistan.” By Christopher Sims.

Christopher Sims, undergraduate education director at the Center for Documentary Studies and Lecturing Fellow in the Documentary Arts, will receive the Arte Laguna Prize in Photographic Art, one of Italy’s most prestigious photography awards. The prize includes an exhibition in Venice as well as a cash award of €7,000. Over three thousand people gathered recently in the Nappe Arsenale for the opening of the exhibition, which featured the recipients of the Arte Laguna prizes in painting, sculpture and installation, photographic art, video art and performance, virtual art, and land art.

The Arte Laguna Prize is organized by the Italian Cultural Association MoCA, receives support from the Italian Head of State, and has the patronage of, among others, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Veneto Region, and the European Institute of Design (IED).

The prize selection jury, chaired by IED director and curator Igor Zanti, released a statement on Sims’ photographic project Theater of War: The Pretend Villages of Iraq and Afghanistan that explained, in part, their decision [translated from the Italian]:

“For the interesting research on the issues of cultural mediation, on the perception of a reality tinged with contrasts that is at the core of our contemporary world. The work, in the simplicity of the composition, features a balance of strengths that are rich in metaphorical and conceptual implications.”

A selection of photographs from the Arte Laguna award ceremony in Venice, Italy.

A selection of photographs from the 2015 Arte Laguna awards ceremony in Venice, Italy.

Sims’s photography and video projects have also received support in the last year from a Regional Artist Project Grant from ArtsGreensboro and a Collaboration Development Grant from the Office of the Provost and the Council for the Arts at Duke University. His work was recently reviewed on the Aperture blog and his photographs from Guantanamo Bay were exhibited as part of the Guantanamo Public Memory Project in 2014 at the Rayburn House Office on Capitol Hill, which was organized by Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights.

Christopher Sims is the undergraduate educator director at the Center for Documentary Studies (CDS) and a Lecturing Fellow in Documentary Arts. He has an undergraduate degree in history from Duke University, a master’s degree in visual communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a MFA in studio art from the Maryland Institute College of Art. He has worked as a photo archivist at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. and, at CDS, has coordinated the exhibition, awards, and web programs. His most recent exhibitions include shows at SF Camerawork, the Griffin Museum of Photography, the Houston Center for Photography, the Light Factory, the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, and the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art. His project about Guantanamo Bay was featured in The Washington Post, the BBC World Service, Roll Call, and Flavorwire. He is represented by Ann Stewart Fine Art in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Civilian Art Projects in Washington, D.C., and Clark Gallery in Boston, Massachusetts. He was selected as the recipient of the Baum Award for Emerging American Photographers in 2010 and named one of the “new Superstars of Southern Art” by Oxford American magazine in 2012.
Be Sociable, Share!

    Leave a Reply