HAPPENINGText: Taketo Oguchi

In the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic, one of Asia’s largest artist art fairs, “Unknown Asia,” was held online on 12th and 13th December. This year is the 6th edition of the fair, featuring 135 creators from 11 countries and regions, including China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Macau, as well as Japan.

In addition to exhibiting artworks, the event invites leading art directors, gallerists and producers from Japan and abroad being judges and reviewers, who vote and award artists, give artists opportunities to present their works, also support their activities as supplementary prizes. Starting from last year, the event has been collaborating with art events in Kansai region such as “Rokko Meets Art” and “KG+” in order to further expand presentation opportunities.

JooLee Kang, Micro Sense: House of Pattern, 2019, Mixed media, Dimensions variable
JooLee Kang “Micro Sense: House of Pattern” 2019, Mixed media, Dimensions variable

This year’s Grand Prix Award, given to the artist who received the most votes from jury, went to South Korean artist JooLee Kang. She is one of the most emerging artists that galleries and museums in Seoul have been paying attention recently. Her three-dimensional works, which show a strong vitality born from her delicate drawings, attracted much attention.

The Audience Award, chosen by the general public, went to Tomoro Yamanaka based on a comprehensive evaluation of the number of accesses to the artist booth, the number of posts on the chat page, and the amount of support during the fair.
Yamanaka will be invited to Unknown Asia 2021 to be held next year.

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Masahiro Suzuki