OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA—The Artists’ Legacy Foundation today announced that Juan Sánchez (b. 1954)—the influential Nuyorican artist who explores ethnic, racial, and national identity in his multimedia work—is the recipient of its 2022 Artist Award. The $25,000 award is given to a visual artist whose primary medium is painting or sculpture in recognition of their professional achievements. Each year, ten artists are proposed for the Award by five anonymous nominators. Like the nominators, the jury of three comprises art-world peers who make the final decision.
Squeak Carnwath, the Foundation’s board president, said, “We are delighted to recognize the inimitable Juan Sánchez and his dynamic, politically engaged practice. His expansive body of work resonates today just as emphatically and passionately as when he began in the 1980s. His artistic investigations of his Brooklyn and Puerto Rican roots and reflections on the current moment are at once deeply personal and profoundly universal. We are grateful to our esteemed nominators and jurors and appreciate their service, expertise, and generous spirits.”
This year’s jurors were Derek Fordjour, interdisciplinary artist; Miguel Luciano, multimedia artist; and Monica Ramirez-Montagut, Director of the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, NY. Fordjour said, “While this year’s selection pool was highly competitive, Juan Sánchez emerged as the absolute winner. For decades, he continues to produce deeply personal artwork that centers marginalized communities and has bolstered his studio practice with a stellar career as an educator and mentor to countless artists.”
Luciano said, “Juan Sánchez has achieved a legacy that’s inspired generations of artists through the sublime beauty of his paintings and prints, and his unwavering commitment to social justice and political liberation. He is an icon among Puerto Rican artists in the diaspora and one of the most important artists of our time.”
Ramirez-Montagut said, “It is a true privilege to be able to honor the legacy of Juan Sánchez and recognize his commitment and dedication to his practice, the arts, and our communities. I hope this award conveys our admiration and appreciation for the integrity of his work as well as its excellence.”
The artist’s latest solo exhibition is on view at Hutchinson Modern and Contemporary gallery in New York City through November 4, providing a timely opportunity to experience his work.
Sánchez said, “It is so wonderful to realize that there are individuals out there who recognize, value, and name your work. I am deeply thankful, gratified, and humble to receive the 2022 Artists’ Legacy Foundation Artist Award. This is a critical acknowledgement that is deeply encouraging.”