The winner of the Cartier Award 2008 was Cuban artist Wilfredo Prieto. Prieto, based in Barcelona and Havana, is a talented young conceptual artist whose work often takes the form of site specific installations. His proposal was chosen from over 400 applications submitted by artists from across the world.
For Frieze Art Fair 2008, sponsored by Deutsche Bank for the fifth year, Prieto created a work that flew the flag of celebrity. The classic red carpet traced a route through the fair that anyone could follow until it led out and up to join the top of a very tall flagpole. The work could be interpreted as an attempt to describe world orders that defy geo-political definition. The piece was also a gestural act that drew a simple line from the insider world of the art fair to the outside.
The Cartier Award is widely acknowledged as one of the world’s leading art awards. It allows an emerging artist from outside the UK to realise a major project at Frieze Art Fair as part of the influential Frieze Projects programme curated by Neville Wakefield.