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C/O Berlin Talent Award 2019

Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques . Mira Anneli Naß

C/O Berlin is delighted to award this year‘s C/O Berlin Talent Award to French artist Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques and to present his work in the solo exhibition Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques . Sub Rosa from 07 December 2019 to 29 February 2020 at C/O Berlin in the Amerika Haus at Hardenbergstrasse 22–24, 10623 Berlin.

The only prize of its kind in Europe, the C/O Berlin Talent Award recognizes the exceptional work of young photographers and art critics. The 2019 prize has been awarded to Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques, who was also nominated and shortlisted for the 2018 award. Couzinet-Jacques’ outstanding signature style and sustained development are once again on display in his most recent work, Sub Rosa (2018), whose contemporary vision, documentary-like visual language, and intelligent combination of photography, video, and sound installations fully convinced the jury. Sub Rosa will be shown for the first time as part of a solo exhibition at C/O Berlin. A catalog accompanying the exhibition will be published by Spector Books, Leipzig. It is edited by Kathrin Schönegg of the C/O Berlin Foundation and includes an essay by Mira Anneli Naß, the recipient this year’s C/O Berlin Talent Award in the field of art criticism.

An expert panel, comprising Ann-Christin Bertrand (curator, C/O Berlin Foundation), Milena Carstens (head photography editor, ZEITmagazin), Joachim Naudts (curator, Fotomuseum Antwerpen), Stefanie Moshammer (2018 winner of the C/O Berlin Talent Award), and Thomas Seelig (curator, photography collection of Museum Folkwang, Essen) has selected four further artists — Axel Braun (Germany), Jan Hoek (Netherlands), Camille Lévêque (France), and Luo Yang (China) — for the Shortlist. C/O Berlin looks forward to introducing the work of these artists in the autumn issue of the C/O Berlin Newspaper, and online as part of C/O Berlin’s cooperation with Der Greif.


Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques (b. 1983, Sens, France) lives and works in Paris. He studied at the École Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Marseille, graduating in 2010, and the École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie in Arles, graduating in 2012. His works have been exhibited at Le BAL in Paris, Fotofestival Mannheim-Heidelberg- Ludwigshafen and Aperture Foundation in New York. In 2015, Couzinet-Jaques held a fellowship at the Centre Photographique d’Ile-de-France in Paris, and from 2014–2016 he was artist-in-residence at the Cité Internationale des Arts program in Paris. In 2015, he was awarded the first Immersion Award by Fondation d’entreprise Hermès and Aperture Foundation. His first book, Eden (2006), was produced in collaboration with Fred Cave and published by Aperture. The project Sub Rosa was initiated during the artist residency (2017-2018) by Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques at the French Academy Casa de Velázquez in Madrid and was supported by the Centre National des arts plastiques and the Fondation des Artistes in 2019. Most recently, he was selected as a 2019 Foam Talent by the Foam Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam.

Mira Anneli Naß (b. 1989 in Schwäbisch Hall, Germany) studied art history, literature, and theater studies in Munich and Florence, and the theory and history of photography at the Folkwang University of the Arts. She has been working as a research associate at the Institute of Art History and Aesthetic Theory at the University of Bremen since 2019. She is currently conducting research for her dissertation project dealing with artistic narratives of surveillance and power. Her recent publications include A Complete Negation of our Time. The Photo Book “Bäume” by Albert Renger- Patzsch and Ernst Jünger in PhotoResearcher 31 (2019) and Krupp’sche Panoramen als Sichtbarkeitsdispositiv. Visuelle Strategien der Narration von (industrieller) Macht in kritische berichte 4 (2018). Mira Anneli Naß lives and works in Bremen.

Axel Braun (b. 1983, Düsseldorf, Germany) studied at Folkwang University of Arts in Essen, and fine art at École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris. His work has featured in several solo and group exhibitions at various institutions, among them Hartware MedienKunstVerein at Dortmunder U, Kunstmuseum Bochum, Krakow Photomonth 2018, Kunsthaus NRW Kornelimünster and Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives in Budapest. He was Artist-in-Residence at Gyeonggi Creation Center (ROK), Goethe-Institut Bukarest and Institute for Advanced Studies der Central European University. Braun has received numerous prizes and scholarships from institutions including the German Academic Scholarship Foundation, the DAAD, the award for artists from the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, as well as awards from the Central European University’s Institute for Advanced Studies and the Kunststiftung NRW, as well as the Stiftung Kunstfond’s work grant.

Jan Hoek (b. 1984, Utrecht, Netherlands) is a photographer. He studied image and speech at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, graduating in 2012. In his work, Hoek often focuses on minority groups in African society, such as homeless people, drug addicts, and people who advertise on online marketplaces to do odd jobs or to work as amateur models. Critical yet humorous, his photographs thematize aspects of colonial history, as well as contemporary discourses on gender, consumption, and capitalism. They have been exhibited worldwide in Antwerp, Istanbul, St. Petersburg, Jakarta, Shenzhen, Lagos, Miami, London, and New York. Hoek has also held solo exhibitions in Foam Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam’s Foam 3h project space, Felix & Foam, and He Xianging Art Museum in Shenzhen. His photographs have since been published in Foam Magazine, Vice, Mister Motley, GUP, New York Times and King Kong Magazine.

Camille Lévêque (b. 1985 in Paris, France) is a visual artist, photographer, graphic designer, and publisher. Lévêque’s work spans the genres of photography, video, collage, and installation. Prior to focusing on her artistic career, she worked as a reporter for the UNHCR in Armenia and as an editorial assistant for Magnum Photos in Paris. Lévêque has been nominated for and won various awards, among them the Prix Maison Blanche, Voies Off Arles, Cosmos PDF Award, the PHmuseum Photography Grant, and the Lucie Scholarship. Her works have been exhibited at established institutions such as MACRO, Aperture Foundation, Unseen Festival, and Le Centquatre, and have also been published in Le Monde, Libération, Foam Magazine, Dazed, and Internazionale. Lévêque founded and is active in the collective Live Wild, and also co-founded the publishing house Orpheus Standing Alone. She lives and works in Paris.

Luo Yang (b. 1984, Shenyang, China) is an artist and photographer. She studied graphic design at the LuXun Academy of Fine Arts in China, graduating in 2006, and is considered one of the most important artists of her generation thanks to her documentary photography. In 2013, her work was shown at the exhibition FUCK OFF 2 at Groniger Museum, curated by Ai Weiwei. Luo’s works have also been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions at numerous other museums, project spaces, festivals, and biennials spanning Mumbai to Berlin. The artist lives and works in Beijing and Shanghai.