Isaac Julien wins the Goslarer Kaiserring 2022

We are thrilled to share with you that Isaac Julien receives the Goslar Kaiserring of 2022. Julien is honored for his sensual and poetic visual narrative that breaks down barriers between different artistic disciplines.

“It is a great honor to receive the renowned Goslar Kaiserring for 2022,” says Isaac Julien.

“This award has a long and impressive history, and many of the previous winners are long-time friends and colleagues (…) Receiving this award is also an inspiration to continue the work that I have been doing for four decades.” His relationship with Germany, where he has taught for a long time and has many friends, has always been particularly strong. “And this award comes at an important time when the recognition of international values ​​in contemporary art is essential,” said the artist.

In their justification, the Kaiserring jury wrote about Isaac Julien: “He breaks down barriers between different artistic disciplines by drawing from film, dance, photography, music, theatre, painting and sculpture and uniting them in a highly sensual visual narrative. Julien’s work deals with important social and human issues of our time – racism, migration, diversity, queerness, homophobia and chauvinism – and encourages us to rethink and explore social responsibility.” Isaac Julien combines pointed political expressiveness with an aesthetic of visual seduction.

The city of Goslar has been awarding the Kaiserring every year since 1975. It consists of an aquamarine set in gold and engraved with the seal of Emperor Henry IV. Former award winners include Joseph Beuys and Christo. Julien is expected to accept the Kaiserring in Goslar on October 8th.

ABOUT Isaac Julien

Sir Isaac Julien KBE RA (GB, 1960), a London-born filmmaker and installation artist, is celebrated for his groundbreaking approach to art, seamlessly merging film, dance, photography, music, theater, painting, and sculpture to craft compelling visual narratives through multi-screen film installations. Notably, his 1989 documentary-drama “Looking for Langston” and the Cannes Film Festival Semaine de la Critique prize-winning debut feature, “Young Soul Rebels” (1991), garnered critical acclaim on a global scale.

Julien’s international acclaim extends to prestigious solo exhibitions at prominent venues, including the Barnes Foundation, Smith College Museum of Art, and Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. His works have graced the walls of renowned institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Art Institute of Chicago.

In addition to his artistic pursuits, Julien has made significant contributions to academia, holding key positions at institutions like the University of Arts London and Staatliche Hoscschule fur Gestaltung, Karlsruhe. His educational efforts were further recognized when he was awarded the James Robert Brudner ’83 Memorial Prize and delivered lectures at Yale University in 2016.

Isaac Julien’s dedication to the arts has earned him distinguished accolades, including The Royal Academy of Arts Charles Wollaston Award in 2017 and a knighthood as part of Queen Elizabeth II’s Honours List in 2022. Furthermore, he was honored with the esteemed Kaiserring Goslar Award in 2022.

In April 2023, Tate Britain hosted a comprehensive survey show, presenting Isaac Julien’s illustrious career. This exhibition featured works spanning four decades, encompassing early films and expansive multi-screen installations that delve into the themes of global movement and history. It marked the first-ever presentation of Isaac Julien’s extensive body of work in the United Kingdom. Following its showcase at Tate Britain, the exhibition traveled to K21 in Düsseldorf, with its next destination set to be Bonnefanten in Maastricht, where it will be open for viewing from March 9 onwards.