The Culture Prize of the Canton of Zurich, worth 50,000 francs, goes to Hannes Binder in 2022. The government council is thus honoring an established, versatile and innovative artist. Hannes Binder (*1947) studied at the Zurich School of Applied Arts and has worked as a freelance illustrator for numerous print media and book publishers since 1972, including style-defining publications such as “NZZ Folio”, “Der Spiegel”, “Stern” and “Die Zeit”.
He has also been writing his own comic books and picture books for over thirty years. The scraperboard technique – the simulated woodcut – is Hannes Binder’s trademark. Both based on literary models and in his own stories, he condenses space and time, architecture and nature into complex images. His worlds – fantastic compositions in black and white – are abstract, and that’s why they remind you of a great pull: you can lose yourself in his hatching and find a lot again. They combine grand gestures with attention to detail.
In addition to his role in Swiss children’s and youth literature, Hannes Binder’s spirit of innovation deserves special mention. In the graphic novel «Der Digitale Dandolo», published in 2020, something radically new happens in terms of media: For example, the use of QR codes puts different time levels and characters into dialogue with one another, creating completely new possibilities for telling stories.
Hannes Binder is awarded the Culture Prize 2022 for his proven artistic quality and independence.
Promotional awards for Last Tango and Edouard Mätzener
This year, the two sponsorship prizes of CHF 30,000 each go to the art space Last Tango and the musician Edouard Mätzener.
Tango was last founded in 2016 by Arianna Gellini (*1984) and Linda Jensen (*1985) as an off-space. The two internationally experienced curators have a refreshing dose of curiosity, independence and perseverance. Again and again, Gellini and Jensen bring together unexpected pairings and combinations of art practices.
In recent years, Last Tango has developed into a definite meeting place for the scene and has become a guarantee for new discoveries. To date, 21 exhibitions with around 90 artists have taken place in the art space, with female positions being conspicuously represented. The exhibitions are always carefully curated and underpinned with well-founded concepts and contemporary issues. The development that your art space has undergone since it was founded is impressive. In 2021, Last Tango was transformed into an arts association: the realignment aims to further help bring diverse audiences together to foster mutual understanding, critical reflection and engaged collaboration, and form a vibrant arts community.
The sponsorship award 2022 is intended to strengthen the initiators of Last Tango, Arianna Gellini and Linda Jensen, in their extremely valuable mediation and networking work and to support them in this phase of further development.
The violinist Edouard Mätzener (*1989 in Zurich) causes a sensation both as a soloist and in various combinations. For twelve years now he has made his solo debut at Casino Basel with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra conducted by Howard Griffiths. He then earned his Master of Music at Yale University and the one for Specialized Performance Soloist at the Hochschule in Basel. Since then, he has performed with the Basel Chamber Orchestra, the Zurich Camerata and the Basel Symphony Orchestra, among others. His concerts have taken him to concert halls in Switzerland, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Israel, Brazil, Japan, South Korea and the USA.
But not only as a soloist, but also as a chamber musician, he causes a stir. As second violinist in the Merel Quartet, Edouard Mätzener is a convincing, sensitive musician who responds to his fellow musicians with precision and spontaneity. In addition to his passion for chamber music, he is a founding member, violinist and composer and the driving force behind the klezmer band Cheibe Balagan.
Edouard Mätzener, who lives in Zurich, moves between classical, jazz and world music with such somnambulistic certainty that his violin sounds just as authentically like a Yiddish folk violin as it does like a swinging bass or a gleaming violin. In doing so, he doesn’t line up any superimposed effects, but rather the poetic nuances of the music in great detail.
The award is a recognition of his versatility, combined with his high standards of every form of musical expression.
Gold Medal of Honor to Beatrice von Matt
This year, the Golden Medal of Honor of the Canton of Zurich goes to the literary scholar and publicist Beatrice von Matt. With the Golden Medal of Honor, the Government Council honored a personality who, in addition to his own artistic work, has made a great contribution to cultural life in the canton of Zurich and far beyond.
Beatrice von Matt (*1936) is one of the most influential Swiss voices in the German-language literary scene. As a publicist, feature editor of the Neue Zürcher Zeitung and member of the Pro Helvetia foundation, she opened the door to literature for entire generations and kept it open for decades. They wrote monographs on various important Swiss writers and, as editors, were responsible for the edition of Meinrad Inglin’s works.
In doing so, Beatrice von Matt demonstrated a sure judgment and often forward-looking intuition. Her texts, written for the available medium of the daily newspaper, consistently show substance, knowledge, passion and depth. Beatrice von Matt has a unique wealth of knowledge and reading horizons and always knows how to make the connections between the different writers visible.
For her many years of outstanding literary and journalistic work, Beatrice von Matt is awarded the Golden Medal of Honor of the Government Council.