On the 10th year of the PKL Prizes for Art Criticism, we invite entries that expound on the theme “Risk.” Essays should be anchored as critiques about artists, art works, exhibitions, projects, or art events that reflect on risk, construed broadly. Risk calls to mind danger or peril. On the other hand, risk also alludes to possibility. We try, take our chances, and persist in the hope of effecting great change.
The theme is resonant to the efforts of Art Association of the Philippines founder Purita Kalaw-Ledesma who averred that art criticism is vital to the development of art movements. She believed in the urgency and agency of criticism. The title of her 1974 book is telling: the story of Philippine art was composed as a “struggle,” assuming an active stance and evoking the push and pull of forces to make things happen. In the foreword of the inaugural art criticism competition organized by the Kalaw-Ledesma Foundation in the nineties, Purita fondly remembers her father, the journalist, historian and public servant Teodoro M. Kalaw. As editor of the nationalist paper El Renacimiento, he was implicated in a libel case filed by the American colonial official Dean Conant Worcester for the article “Birds of Prey” which the latter felt had referred to him. In view of her father’s occupational hazard, Purita wrote that it was “in the defense of the Filipino rights and advocacy of the Filipino cause that he used his pen.” Risk may well be about purpose or resolve, prompting us to think about who we write for, why we write, or more profoundly, why we do the things that we do; enabling us to widen our perspective and propelling us to act in astonishing ways.
The Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prizes in Art Criticism will have English and Filipino categories. A panel of jurors will shortlist a maximum of six (6) writers from each category. From these lists, winners will be selected by the editors of the partner publications. Winners will be announced during the awarding ceremony scheduled in September 2023.
Two winners will be selected from the English category. The winner of the Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prize for The Philippine Star will be awarded a regular column under ‘Platforms’ in the Arts and Culture section of the paper, to be published once a month with a total of 12 articles for a year. The winner of the Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prize for ArtAsiaPacific will be contributing to this bi-monthly publication, with a total of six (6) articles for a year.
One winner selected from the Filipino category will be awarded the Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prize for Katipunan and will be contributing to this bi-annual research publication, with a total of two (2) articles for a year.
In addition to the opportunity to have their written works published, one of the winners will be selected and offered a month-long writer’s residency with Orange Project in Bacolod City, one of the local residency partners. The residency will give the winning writer an opportunity to immerse and interact with local art community.
The Ateneo Art Awards-Purita Kalaw-Ledesma (PKL) Prizes for Art Criticism was launched in 2014 by Ateneo Art Gallery and Kalaw-Ledesma Foundation, Inc. (KLFI). It was named in honor of Purita Kalaw-Ledesma, art patron and founder of the Art Association of the Philippines (AAP). Purita believed in art criticism’s “vital role in the development of culture,” citing its capacity to “guide both artists towards new directions and public taste towards the best in past and current artistic output.”
QUALIFICATIONS OF PARTICIPANTS
- Employees, whether full-time or contractual, of the Ateneo Art Gallery, Ateneo de Manila University, or Kalaw Ledesma-Foundation, Inc., are not allowed to participate.
- Must be based in the Philippines.
- To avoid conflicts of interest, participants must not have a regular column and must not hold an editorial post in any broadsheet or local/international magazine. Regular columnists are not allowed to join but contributors, defined as any person whose written work is published with a byline but not identified as a columnist, may join.
- Bloggers defined as writers of online journals, websites, or whose written work is published in electronic social media may join.
- Past winners of the PKL Prize are not eligible to participate. Writers who have been shortlisted in the past for the PKL Prize may still submit an entry.
MECHANICS FOR ENTRIES
- Entries should be essays with no more than 1,000 words.
- Entries must reflect the theme of the Program. This year’s theme is Risks, inviting entries anchored as critiques about artists, art works, exhibitions, projects, or art events that reflect on risk, construed broadly. Risk calls to mind danger or peril. On the other hand, risk also alludes to possibility. We try, take our chances, and persist in the hope of effecting great change.
- The entry must be written on A4-sized paper. The font should be Arial, Times New Roman, or Book Antiqua, font size 12.
- Entries must be submitted digitally as Word and PDF file attachments with no indication of the identity of the writer on the documents.
- Only one original entry is allowed per participant.
- The essay should not have been published before on any printed or online platform.
- Any entry that has been submitted for consideration in any other writing contest before 30 September 2023 will be disqualified.
- Entries must be submitted at bit.ly/PKL2023Entry by uploading the following file formats with the writer’s last name and title of the entry (ex. Dela Cruz – Essay Title) as filename:
- Entry in Word document format (ex. Dela Cruz – Essay Title.docx)
- Entry in PDF format (ex. Dela Cruz – Essay Title.pdf)
- The deadline for submission of entries will be on 30 June 2023 (Friday), 11:59 PM.
- Copyright of entries of the shortlisted writers (including the winners) shall be held by the writer jointly with AAG and KLFI. All shortlisted and winning essays will be published online in Vital Points after the awarding.