Gallery 1957 is delighted to announce that Joana Choumali has been awarded the 2019 Prix Pictet photography prize; the first African photographer to scoop the honour.
This year's theme was Hope - a reaction to the conflicts and crises of the contemporary climate, whilst recognising hope as a powerful force to overcome. The artist was awarded for her series “Ça va aller” (it will be ok)— a commonly used phrase in her home country Côte d'Ivoire - a series of embroidered photographs responding to the trauma of terrorist attacks in 2016.
Choumali explains: “Each stitch was a way to recover, to lay down the emotions, loneliness and mixed feelings I felt. As an automatic scripture, the act of adding colorful stitches on the pictures has had a soothing effect on me, like a meditation. Adding embroidery on these street photographs was an act of channeling hope and resilience.”
Her work together with the other 12 shortlisted artists for the Prix Pictet, is currently on view at the V&A, London, until 8 December.