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Bougainville Artist Taloi Havini Wins Prestigious Artes Mundi 10 Prize

Artist Explores Identity, History, and Environmental Issues

Taloi Havini has been awarded the prestigious Artes Mundi 10 (AM10) prize, with a cash award of 40,000 GBP. Havini, a multidisciplinary artist from Bougainville, Australia, was selected from a group of seven international artists whose works are currently showcased across five venues in Wales.

Havini’s artistic practice delves into the intersections of history, identity, and nation-building, particularly within the matrilineal social structures of her birthplace. Her immersive video installation, “Habitat,” and a series of prints titled “Where the rivers flow” explore the legacy of resource extraction and Australia’s complex relationship with the Pacific region.

The tenth anniversary edition of Artes Mundi features works by seven shortlisted artists, displayed across various venues in Wales. These artists include Mounira Al Solh, Rushdi Anwar, Alia Farid, Nguyễn Trinh Thi, Carolina Caycedo, and Naomi Rincón Gallardo.

As a leading biennial exhibition and international contemporary art prize, Artes Mundi fosters cultural exchange between the UK and international communities. It has introduced audiences to influential artists such as Dineo Seshee Bopape, Prabhakar Pachpute, Ragnar Kjartansson, and Teresa Margolles, among others.

Nigel Prince, Director of Artes Mundi, praised Havini’s work for its depth, precision, and ability to inspire positive change. Alka Bagri, Trustee of the Bagri Foundation, the presenting partner of Artes Mundi, expressed excitement about the exhibition and the prize, emphasizing the commitment to artistic excellence and cross-cultural influences.

The Artes Mundi 10 jury commended Havini for the integrity of her work, its exceptional research, and its focus on Indigenous knowledge, relationality, and aesthetic rigor. They noted that her installations are both moving and visually stunning, transforming our understanding of the environment and challenging extractive economies.

Taloi Havini expressed gratitude for the recognition and the opportunity to share her people’s Indigenous ancestral stories with audiences in Wales. She hopes that her work can foster connections and raise awareness about the ongoing struggle for cultural, environmental, and political self-determination in Bougainville.