Vikram Divecha has been announced as the winner of this year’s The Middle East Emergent Artist Prize. The award is a the result of a collaboration between Van Cleef & Arpels, Tashkeel and Design Days aimed at further developing the recognition and realization of emergent artists in the Middle East.
Divecha’s winning piece ‘Degenerative Disarrangement’ is a process installation composed of pavement bricks uprooted from a public site and relocated to the courtyard of House 33 in Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood (former Bastakiya). The piece reflects a loss of original context and is described by the artist as a comparison to the altering and struggling found in society today.
This year’s prize invited artists to submit original works in progress under the theme ‘Turning Point’ which focuses on the defining moment during the creative process. Divecha’s ‘turning point’ was a conversation about how masons work within time constraints, which ensured disarrangement in the course of development. He then borrowed this process from the streets and utilized construction materials and industrial production methods to create his installation.
Over 80 submissions were reviewed by the selection committee made up of experts in their field, including writer and curator Murtaza Vali; Shumon Basar, curator for the Global Art Forum, Art Dubai; Director of the International Academy of Art Palestine, Dr. Tina Sherwell; Alban Belloir, Managing Director Van Cleef & Arpels Middle East & India; Cyril Zammit, Fair Director of Design Days Dubai; Tashkeel Founder and Director Sheikha Lateefa bint Maktoum; and Anabelle de Gersigny, Strategy and Partnership Development Manager at Tashkeel.
Divecha’s artwork was displayed at the Van Cleef & Arpels exhibition within Design Days Dubai, the world’s most diverse design fair that showcases local, regional, and international collectible modern and contemporary design pieces.