So in an art world filled with talent the Driehaus Foundation has announced this years Chicago award winners.

Rumor has it this year was extra tough and all nominees and winners should be proud.

The answers as to who they are after the jump.

Driehaus Foundation Unveils Winners of 2008 Artist Awards

Driehaus Individual Artist Awards are the only unrestricted, annual awards for Chicago artists


CHICAGO  “The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation is thrilled to announce this year’s winners of the Individual Artist Awards: Jason Lazarus, Anne Wilson and Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle.

“This year’s entries proved that Chicago artists are always innovating. I am extremely proud of the thriving artists’ community we have in the Chicago area,” said Sunny Fischer, executive director of the Foundation. “The Foundation supports local working artists, allowing their work to continue to enrich our communities.”

The awards are given in recognition of the artists’ past works, talent, commitment to the field and promise. This year the Foundation increased the amount of the cash awards. Each artist will receive $15,000 to use as they see fit. There are no restrictions on how the artists can use their cash awards.

Here is a brief introduction to the winning artists:

  • Jason Lazarus is the winner in the emerging artist category. Lazarus’ photography has earned him a slot in the Museum of Contemporary Art’s 12 x 12 New Artists/New Work series and he has appeared in group shows in New York, Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong. Lazarus lives and works in Chicago. He teaches photography to undergraduates at Columbia College Chicago, Robert Morris College, and Saint Xavier University. To see some of Lazarus’ work, please visit
  • Anne Wilson is a Chicago-based visual artist who creates sculpture, drawings, Internet projects, and DVD stop-motion animations that explore themes of time, loss, private and social rituals. She uses found materials that are familiar and rich with cultural meanings. Wilson’s art is in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art; The Art Institute of Chicago; and Museum of Contemporary Art, among others. She is a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Wilson’s work can be seen at
  • Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle investigates diverse subjects such as climate, immigration and the global impact of social, political, environmental and scientific systems. Often working with technical experts across multiple disciplines, Manglano-Ovalle produces objects that are technically complex, yet engaging. His early work focused on collaborative explorations with young people in Chicago, which led to the founding of Street-Level Youth Media, a community arts organization for youth. Manglano-Ovalle has exhibited his work at acclaimed institutions both nationally and internationally. To learn more about Manglano-Ovalle and his work, visit

“We’re always awed by the depth of creativity shown by the submitting artists,” said Britton Bertran, Individual Artist Awards coordinator for the Foundation. “The jury committee never has an easy choice, but I think they, like the Driehaus Foundation staff and supporters, really enjoy the process and celebrating the winners.”

The Foundation asks more than a dozen arts professionals to serve as anonymous nominators; five more are chosen as jurors who review all artists’ works. Nominators and jurors are local arts experts. The list includes:

  • Susanne Ghez, director of the Renaissance Society;
  • Lane Relyea, art critic and professor at Northwestern University;
  • Lisa Dorin, assistant curator of contemporary art at the Art Institute of Chicago;
  • Carol Ehlers, independant curator; and
  • Nick Cave, artist and past winner of the Individual Artist Awards.

Eligible artists must have lived in the Chicago metropolitan area for at least one year. They must be currently practicing their art, have spent some years as working artists, and have exceptional talent and commitment.

Past winners of the Individual Artist Awards include: Brett Bloom, Nyame O. Brown, Paola Cabal (emerging category), Nick Cave, Juan Angel Chávez, Julia Fish, Gaylen Gerber, Vanalyne Green, Gisela Insuaste (emerging category), Judy Ledgerwood, Laura Letinsky, Brennan McGaffey, Helen Mirra, Darrel Morris, Laurie Palmer, Dan Peterman, David Philpot, Karen Reimer and Richard Rezac, Sumakshi Singh (emerging category), Christine Tarkowski and Philip von Zweck (emerging category).