Acclaimed trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis, experimental theater director Robert Wilson and painter Vija Celmins are among those poised to be honored by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and first lady Jill Biden at an international arts award ceremony at the White House.
The three artists, along with Icelandic-Danish sculptor Olafur Eliasson and Burkinabè-German architect Diébédo Francis Kéré, will receive the 34th Praemium Imperiale Global Arts Prize on Tuesday, ITK can exclusively report.
The award, considered the world’s most prestigious arts prize, recognizes artists for their “international impact and their role in enriching the global community” in five disciplines: sculpture, architecture, painting, music and theater or film.
The Praemium Imperiale, awarded by the Japan Art Association, was first celebrated at the White House by Clinton and then-President Bill Clinton in 1994. The recipients are chosen by the Japan Art Association’s selection committee and its board of trustees.
“I am thrilled to introduce the recipients of the 34th Praemium Imperiale Prize and serve as the international advisor for this esteemed celebration of art and culture,” Clinton told ITK in a statement.
The former New York senator noted that “not one, but two exceptional programs” would be recognized as part of the awards’ Grant for Young Artists.
“The chosen programs, Harlem School of the Arts and Rural Studio, embody the transformative power of art and education that promises to enrich our cultural heritage for years to come,” Clinton said.
The recipients of the award will also be honored at a medal ceremony in Tokyo next month, where they’ll receive 15 million yen, or about $104,000.
Previous winners of the award include Martin Scorsese, Yo-Yo Ma, Judi Dench, Frank Gehry, Francis Ford Coppola and Ingmar Bergman.
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