Rand Abdul Jabbar has been named the winner of the 2022 Richard Mille Art Prize. The artist earned the title with her work Earthly Wonders, Celestial Beings (2019), a series of ceramic sculptures that explores the relationship between archaeology and the land, drawing from her research into ancient Mesopotamian artefacts and mythology.
Abdul Jabbar created 30-40 additional sculptures for the Art Here 2022 exhibition at The Louvre Abu Dhabi curated by Reem Fadda, where the work was showcased in the run-up to the prize. The objects in the series, which are reinterpretations of artefacts, carry layers upon layers of memory and history. In this way, the work engages with the theme of this year’s prize, ‘Icon. Iconic.’
I’m interested in a search for what a formal language from the land might look like. The story of humanity is intrinsically linked to certain images that are almost part of a collective universal history,” the artist told Canvas, describing her submission. “There are forms that are iconic to everyone, where they can immediately decipher what they might mean or what they’re referencing.”