Ghanaian visual artist Ibrahim Mahama has been awarded the 2020 Principal Prince Claus Laureate.
Ibrahim is actively involved in improving social conditions and his powerful artworks use provocative materials and sites to examine and expose histories, uphold the role of labour, challenge authorities and criticise mismanagement of resources.
Directly addressing lack of opportunities and facilities in his home region, the Northern Region of Ghana, he has set up an open access cultural centre and other social projects providing employment, education, studio space and creative activities.
An event was held at the residence of the Netherlands Ambassador to Ghana on Wednesday, December 2 to celebrate him just after the official announcement of the seven 2020 Prince Claus Laureates in a special online ceremony due to the coronavirus pandemic.
During the programme, His Royal Highness Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands, Honorary Chair of the Prince Claus Fund, and the Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Sigrid Kaag spoke about the power of culture.
Selected from around the world, the 2020 Prince Claus Laureates are Açık Radyo (Independent radio, Turkey), Diamantina Arcoiris (Fashion designer, Colombia), Fendika Cultural Centre (Music and cultural centre, Ethiopia), Tunakaimanu Fielakepa (Textile arts and cultural heritage expert, Tonga) and m7red (Architecture and activist network, Argentina). The Next Generation Laureate went to Hira Nabi (Filmmaker, Pakistan).
Since 1997, the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development has presented Prince Claus Awards to individuals, groups and organisations whose cultural actions have a positive impact on their societies, primarily in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean and Eastern Europe. In keeping with the Prince Claus Fund’s guiding principles, the awards highlight significant contributions in regions where resources or opportunities for cultural expression are limited.