Samdani Art Award

The Samdani Art Award is Bangladesh's premier art award, and it aims to support, promote and highlight Bangladeshi contemporary art. This Bi-annual award will be given to a talented emerging artist from Bangladesh who is between the ages of 20 and 40. In 2012, there were two winners, Khaled Hasan and Musrat Reazi.

The Samdani Art Award is honored to be partnering with Delfina Foundation from 2013 onwards by offering the winner a three-month residency with the Delfina Foundation in London. A residency at the Delfina Foundation can be a career-defining moment for an artist to develop their ideas, sharpen their practice, and widen their networks.

The Delfina Foundation has partnered with leading institutions such as the Townhouse Gallery, Tate, Ashkal Alwan, Art Dubai, Frieze Projects, the Chisenhale Gallery, Videobrasil, Creative India Foundation, the Institute of Contemporary Arts and Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art, to name a few. The Samdani Art Foundation is now excited to join forces with Delfina Foundation to offer this important opportunity and to help build the next generation of contemporary artists in Bangladesh.

The Delfina Foundation is an independent, non-profit foundation dedicated to facilitating artistic exchange and developing creative practice through residencies, partnerships and public programming, with a special focus on international collaborations with the greater Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. In 2014, Delfina Foundation will expand into London’s largest international residency programme. All the participating artists will be selected through a nomination process and an international jury panel will decide the winning artist. The Jury Panel for the Samdani Art Award will be chaired by Aaron Cezar, Director of Delfina Foundation and includes independent curator Adriano Pedrosa (Brazil), Guggenheim adjunct curator Sandhini Poddar (India), Tate curator Jessica Morgan (UK), and Khoj Director Pooja Sood (India).



Samdani Art Foundation would like to acknowledge and thank the following individuals for their support in nominating the artists:

- Abul Barq Alvi
- Dhali Al Mamoon
- Khushi Kabir
- Lalaruk Selim
- Mohammad Eunus
- Monjur Ahmed
- Nasim Ahmed Nadvi
- S. A. Bikash
- Shahid Kabir
- Shahidul Alam
- Shawon Akand
- Shishir Bhattacharjee
- Syed Manzoorul Islam
- Tayeba Begum Lipi
- Wakilur Rahman

Jury Panel for Samdani Art Award 2014

  • Pooja

    Pooja Sood

    Pooja Sood is the Director of KHOJ International Artists’ Association, an autonomous, artist led registered society which is committed to experimentation and exchange in the visual arts since 2000, she has researched and facilitated the establishment of the South Asia Network for the Arts(SANA).

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  • Sandhini

    Sandhini Poddar

    Sandhini Poddar is a Mumbai-based art historian and Adjunct Curator at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, working on special projects in New York and Abu Dhabi. Poddar was formerly Associate Curator of Asian Art at the Guggenheim where she was responsible for global exhibitions, acquisitions, and scholarship on modern and contemporary Asian art.

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  • Jessica

    Jessica Morgan

    Jessica Morgan is The Daskalopoulos Curator, International Art, Tate Modern, where she is currently curating The World Goes Pop (2015) and Bhupen Kharkhar (2016). Morgan curated the retrospective of Saloua Raouda Choucair (2013), Gabriel Orozco (2011) John Baldessari: Pure Beauty (2009), and Martin Kippenberger (2006).

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  • Eungie

    Eungie Joo

    As Keith Haring Director and Curator of Education and Public Programs at the New Museumfrom 2007-2012,Eungie Joo commissioned the monthly seminarNight School by Anton Vidokle(2008-9); edited the volume Rethinking Contemporary Art and Multicultural Education(2009)

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  • Aaron

    Aaron Cezar

    Aaron Cezar is the founding Director of Delfina Foundation, where he develops and oversees its interrelated programme of residencies, exhibitions and public platforms with cultural practitioners from around the world, in particular the Middle East and increasing South Asia.

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Samdani Art Award 2014 Shortlisted Artist

Afsana Sharmin Zhumpa

Born in 1984 and brought up by a conservative muslim family in Chittagong, Afsana has strived to prove and portray herself as nature’s sensitive observer through her imaginative and interactive work which exists in the middle of time, space and spectators’ hearts. Though her background is of sculpture as represented in her ‘Au'te Naa’ (2007) project, she has also shown her prowess in performance art through ‘To the Feminine’ (2011), dealing with the society’s thought and beliefs about the feminine – ‘a female life rather than a human being’. Objects found in the nature- seeds, dry leaves, dry branches, Indigo blue are the prominent materials of her work.

Ayesha Sultana

Ayesha was born in 1984 in Jessore, Bangladesh, but ended up studying under Rashid Rana at the BNU in Lahore. An active member of the Britto Arts Trust, she recently completed a residency at Gasworks in London. Her work relies heavily on process as an attempt to translate notions of space, which is inseparably connected with perceptions of time as a way of looking. The illustrated image, Cataract II, is part of the artist’s ongoing series of drawing with staples, piecing rice paper and creating new patterns and structures that highlight the tension between the piercing strength of the industrial staple and the vulnerability of the translucent organic paper.

Kabir Ahmed Masum Chisty

After acquiring an MFA in Sculpture from the University of Dhaka, Kabir went on to participate in major group exhibitions including Parables: Pavillion of Bangladesh, 54th International Art Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia 2011, 14th Asian Art Biennale by Shilpakala Academy and many more. Born in Narayanganj in 1976, Kabir has had national and international exposure due to his Land art installations and interesting animations leading to him attending the HK International Sculpture Symposium in Hong Kong. He is also one of the reputed Founder-Trustees of the celebrated Britto Arts Trust.

Palash Battacharjee

Palash was born in 1983 in Chittagong. His artistic talents were honed while he was studying in the Department of Fine Arts under the University of Chittagong and during his residency at National Goyang Art Studio (National Museum of Contemporary Art) and Seoksu Art Project (AAL Asian Artists Exchange Program), both in South Korea. His art practice is a way of looking into the point of human happiness, sadness, viciousness and expressing these thoughts. Palash’s art work and practice evolve with common and familiar objects and in some sense, are influenced by the archetype of contemporary Western art.

Promotesh Das Pulak

A visual artist born in 1980 in Sylhet, Pulak’s works represent the critical views about the odds of social crisis, environment and war. According to the young artist, the subject matter of each body of work determines the materials and the forms of the work. His notable works were exhibited in the well-known 54th Venice Biennale, Bangladesh Pavilion (Venice, Italy). Interested in the duality that lies between organic natural elements and combat equipments, he believes the combination suggests the betrayal of innocence and beauty. Many of Pulak’s Sculpture installations were large-scale war equipment assembled by small flowers made of ‘Shola plant’ that are used as traditional craft materials.

Sanjoy Chakraborty

After studying at Rabindra Bharati University in India, Sanjoy realised his calling in the art world after having spent six years pondering about his own identity and how politics played a vital role in the society. Born in 1984 in Bangladesh, Sanjoy always felt like he was a part of the minority. After journeying to Kolkata, his identity of being a ‘Banggal’ formed, fuelling his multiple perceptions of changing trends in society and art. Soon after completing his residency in Assam, Sanjoy used what he learned and understood about how social conditions influence the human psyche and expressed that through his practice of the arts in various exhibitions organized by the Shilpakala Academy and others.

Sarkar Protik

Before he found his calling in medium Photography, Sarkar had studied Marketing. Born in 1986 and raised in Dhaka, Sarker’s subtle technique belies the strong underpinning of his documentary approach. However, rather than taking the spectators on a literal journey through a traditional narrative, he helps them enter his personal space, using the lightness of his visual touch and the emptiness of his frames. The widely exhibited Photographer has won the Prix Mark Grosset pour les écoles internationales de photographie and the World Bank Art Program in the year 2012. The British Journal of Photography has also chosen him as one of the Emerging Photographers of 2014.

Shumon Ahmed

Shumon was born in 1977 in Dhaka. He has exhibited extensively both in Bangladesh and abroad at institutions such as the Whitechapel Gallery in London and the Chobi Mela. In his ‘Land of the Free’ (2009), Shumon challenged our understanding (or lack of it) of America’s holding pen for terrorist suspects, Guantanamo Bay. In his Photography series ‘I’ (2008 - ongoing) Shumon creates a dual self-portrait that depicts him sitting cross-legged under a biblical tree, wrapped in a dirt color shoal. Recently Shumon brought forth the plight of his own mother’s suffering through photography, sound, installation and personal letters in ‘What I have forgotten could fill an ocean what is not real never lived’ (2011 - ongoing).

Syed Tareq Rahman

A current student of MFA at the Faculty of Fine Arts in University of Dhaka, young Tareq has already been credited with four prestigious awards in sculpture: the latest is the Best Award in Sculpture at the 17th Young Artist Art Exhibition 2010 organised by Shilpakala Academy. Born in 1988, he has the aspiration to express his visions and realisations on life through his artwork and spread those among the noted art connoisseur’s of the country and abroad. For most of his sculptures, Tareq uses metal castings, cement castings, fibre castings and woodcut as techniques for his sculptures done with wood, brass, iron and stone and others.

Yasmin Jahan Nupur

Born in 1977, Yasmin was inspired by the urgent ecological and community/public aspects of life and inclined to incorporate those elements in her work. She has worked closely with people from communities who were deprived from social benefits which lead her to explore prevailing social values of her region. Her video installation, ‘I am walking on borderlines, being together’ at the Venice Biennale was a substantially deep political piece that generated a lot of interest. Though Nupur completed her MFA in paintings from Chittagong University, like many other contemporary artists, Nupur these days only concentrates on installations. As recognition of her artistic endeavours, Yasmin Jahan Nupur has also enjoying the International Arts Residency by the Commonwealth Foundation of United Kingdom.

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