The $100,000 prize, awarded by an international jury, was established to honor sculptors whose work elevates and expands our ideas about the medium, says Jeremy Strick, director of the Nasher Sculpture Center.
“They help us to think about sculpture in new ways,” says Strick. “[We think differently] because of their incorporation of unusual materials.”
Huyghe, who was born in France and works in New York, fits that bill. He also works in video and performance art.
His piece “Unreason”, on view at the Nasher, resembles a reclining human figure. It was cast from an old stone monument outside Paris. Electric coils inside the piece make its stone warm to the touch — and help grow the plants Huyghe incorporated into the work.
“In a way it’s inanimate, but it’s also living,” Strick says. “There’s something kind of strange and also humorous and lighthearted about the fact that if you touched it it’s warm to the touch like flesh.”
Strick says Huyghe is fascinated with time and concerned with living systems.
“No matter what he does and no matter the medium he works in, the work is always unusual, extraordinary, sometimes mysterious and uncanny,” says Strick
You can see two of Huyghe’s sculptures at Nasher Sculpture Center. Museum admission is free this Saturday. Visit Art and Seek dot org to learn about the Nasher Prize.