Who’s the Boss?

Camille Henrot

The biennial Hugo Boss Prize is one of the most prestigious awards in art today—not surprising considered the list of past winners includes Matthew Barney, Rirkrit Tiravanija and Tacita Dean. Now in it’s tenth edition, the tetrahedral trophy and $100,000 purse will be presented on November 20th at a glamorous fete at New York’s Guggenheim Museum. Here, a look at the finalists.


Paul Chan Paul Chan blends politics and literature in his multimedia work, which has included everything from video installations to a publishing imprint. He has staged a public telling of Waiting for Godot in New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward post-Katrina and made video projections referencing the Marquis de Sade that were shown at the 53rd Venice Biennale.


Sheela Gowda Indian artist Sheela Gowda’s installations and sculptures often begin with potent symbols of her country: incense, cow dung, ceremonial dyes, oil drums and coils of string arranged to resemble thick black hair. Ideas of craft and traditional domestic work also come into play, highlighting the oppression of women in a patriarchal society.


Camille Henrot Camille Henrot approaches art like an anthropologist, digging through images from the digital age. Her Grosse Fatigue, a rapid-fire succession of images against the background of spoken-word poem, earned her the Silver Lion award at the 55th Venice Biennale in 2013.


Hassan Khan Hassan Khan uses his hometown of Cairo as his source material, whether by recording its street musicians or staging a performance in an apartment building publicized entirely by word of mouth.


Charline von Heyl Abstract artist Charline von Heyl’s multimedia compositions begin with a question, she told W Magazine: “How do I build a painting that I haven’t ever made before?” She blends drawing, painting, collage, and printing techniques like woodcut, silkscreen, and lithography to create a wide-ranging visual language that constantly offers up new surprises.