The main winners of the Prize for Young Dutch Art Criticism 2018 have been announced: Noortje de Leij won the first prize in the category Essay and the category Review was won by Jorne Vriens. Boris Van den Eynden won the first prize of the new Prize for Innovative Art Critical Practices.

The winners were announced on Friday evening December 14 during a festive ceremony at Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam.

First prize Essay

Noortje de Leij
She receives a cash prize of 3,000 euros and a year-long guidance from a personal mentor. In addition, her winning essay will be published in De Groene Amsterdammer.

Noortje de Leij, main prize winner Essay. Photo by Aad Hoogendoorn

First prize Review

Jorne Vriens
He receives a cash prize of 3,000 euros and a year-long guidance from a personal mentor. His winning review will be published in the upcoming issue of Tubelight magazine and he will receive writing assignments worth € 1,800 from Dutch newspaper Het Parool.

Jorne Vriens, main prize einner Review. Photo by Aad Hoogendoorn.

The jury decided to value Maarten Buser's submission with an invitation to write a text for the Prix de Rome 2019, and Pia Louwerens received a writing assignment for Metropolis M, for which she is allowed to make a fully funded international trip. Both authors are also offered a writing assignment from Het Parool worth 500 euros. Thomas van Huut receives a guidance program from De Nieuwe Garde and his winning essay is published on The essay of Sarah van Binsbergen will be translated for publication on the international AICA website.

Maarten Buser, photo by Aad Hoogendoorn.

Pia Louwerens, photo by Aad Hoogendoorn.

Thomas van Huut, photo by Aad Hoogendoorn.

Sarah van Binsbergen, photo by Aad Hoogendoorn.

First prize The Prize for Innovative Art Critical Practices

Boris Van den Eynden
Where both main prizes in the categories Essay and Review were won by Dutch authors, the first prize for the Prize for Innovative Art Critical Practices goes to a Fleming: Boris Van den Eynden won the first prize. He receives a cash prize of 3,000 euros. With the prize, the initiators of the prize want to identify and stimulate individuals or initiatives that make an innovative contribution to the Dutch-language reflection on visual art.

Boris Van den Eynden, main prize winner the Prize for Innovative Art Critical Practices. Photo by Aad Hoogendoorn.

All main and basic prize winners receive an annual subscription offered by Metropolis M.

From the jury report:

Jorne Vriens "surprised the jury with his review of the work of Wayne Thiebaud, ‘De tragiek achter taart’, in Museum Voorlinden. Vriens has an eye for detail, knows how to write about matter and then effortlessly switch to cultural criticism; that is clever, and characterizes an intelligent author who is eagerly present in his profession. This review takes the reader along and requires active thinking; an ideal combination. In this article, the jury saw that making a relevant and sharp analysis of a modest subject is the biggest promise in this category."

"The main prize in the Essay category is convincingly won by Noortje de Leij, who was named" a discovery "by the jury. In her essay ‘Sigarettenpeuk op doek – de zin en onzin van afval in de kunst’, she combines solid art historical research with original perspectives. The use of waste in art is not viewed from tendentious plastic soup panic, but as a mirror of social and economic developments and even as a political weapon. Somewhat academically - but so well done that you will appreciate it again - De Leij takes the reader by the hand through familiar and less well-known, well-chosen examples. She has a grip on her subject and that is noticeable in every paragraph. This essay sharpens the reader's gaze, both for the works of art discussed and for such art in the future; extremely clever."

"Boris Van den Eynden is active as an artist, designer and musician. Within each discipline in which he works and on every platform on which he is active, he distinguishes himself through the optimal and extreme use of language. He is very aware of the possibilities and the pitfalls of a linguistic communication. He questions every discipline and its codes, whether digital or analog, from the inside, not as a critic in itself, but from the work itself. The linguistic work of Van den Eynden can thus be seen as a reaction to traditional art criticism. However diverse his work is, it is always reflective and encourages reflection, and is characterized in at least a transverse and at the same time catchy practice in an art and social critical context."

The Prize for Young Dutch Art Criticism is an incentive prize for a new generation of critics and essayists from the Dutch language area, who writes about contemporary visual art. The prize is an initiative of De Appel, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Mondriaan Fund, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, M HKA - Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, Van Abbemuseum, Cobra Museum for Modern Art, Netwerk Aalst and M-Museum Leuven.

The publication with all nominated texts and the jury report can be read online (Dutch only): Publication PJKK 2018.