Discount Artistic Encouragement Award
The Discount Artistic Encouragement Award is awarded annually at the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art to an Israeli artist. The recipient is selected from among the artists whose work is scheduled to be exhibited at the Herzliya Museum that year, by the Discount Bank’s Art Committee: Shulamit Nuss, in charge of the Discount Bank Collection; Roni Gilat-Baharaff, Managing Director of Christie’s Israel; curator Irith Hadar; and curator Roni Cohen-Binyamini. The prize consists of a grant of NIS 40,000 for the artist to produce his or her exhibition at the Museum.
Artist Hilla Toony Navok is the recipient of the 2020 Discount Artistic Encouragement Award at the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art.
Excerpt from the jury’s reasoning: “Hilla Toony Navok’s works draw their inspiration from the material Israeli environment surrounding her. In her work familiar, readymade objects, and accordingly acute realism, are coupled with geometric abstraction. Contemporaneity and modernism are combined with great talent, encapsulating expressions of humor and critique of our time.”
Hilla Toony Navok, born in 1974 in Tel Aviv, pursues both drawing and sculpting. She holds a bachelor’s degree in design from WIZO Haifa, and a master’s degree in art from the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design. Her works have been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions at museums and galleries in Israel and abroad. A work by Navok is on permanent display at the New Train Terminal in Jerusalem (Navon Station). She is a recipient of the Rapaport Prize (2020); Minister of Culture Award and Encouragement of Creativity Award by the Ministry of Culture (2012, 2019); The Israel Museum’s Kolliner Award for a Young Israeli Artist (2018); and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art’s Givon Prize (2011), among others.
In her work, Navok deciphers the codes of Israeli architecture and design, tracing degraded forms of high modernism and abstraction in popular consumer products. Her works are marked by surprising and original sculptural use of common, everyday materials and objects, thereby revealing their latent qualities and offering new ways of looking at them.
A solo exhibition of Navok’s work will be on view in the Great Hall of the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art in February 2021, sponsored by the Discount Artistic Encouragement Award. At the heart of the exhibition will be a large kinetic installation that refers to the architectural properties of the space. Navok uses PVC sheets to create a sculptural-playful environment made up of structures that shift between opening and closing, alternately revealing and concealing their mechanisms of movement. The kinetic operation creates an “abstract drawing in space,” and transitions between matter in its raw state and a functioning structure, and between a complete image and a disassembled version of it.
Natalia Zourabova is the recipient of the 2019 Discount Artistic Encouragement Award at the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art. According to the jury’s reasoning, “With captivating, colorful, and empathetic expressiveness, Zourabova’s realistic paintings offer wry commentary on the personal and social aspects of her life.”
Zourabova, born 1975, immigrated to Israel in 2004 from the former Soviet Union. She is a graduate of the Russian Institute of Theatre Arts, Moscow, and the Academy of Arts, Berlin. She is a member of the New Barbizon collective of painters, which aims to express social criticism by painting from life. In addition, she teaches art and takes place in socially oriented art projects. Her paintings have been presented in numerous one-person shows and group exhibitions in museums and galleries, in Israel and internationally.
A one-person show of Zourabova’s work will be on view at the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art in September 2019, sponsored by the Discount Artistic Encouragement Award. At the heart of the exhibition will be a series of paintings depicting scenes from personal life of the artist, who lives with her daughter in an apartment in Jaffa. The images highlight her experience of both assimilation and rejection as she struggles to settle in Israel. The exhibition will feature the artist’s sketches and sculptures from recent years, along with new paintings, on public view for the first time.
The inaugural recipient is the artist Haimi Fenichel, and his exhibition will open at the Museum in December 2018.
In March 2018 the inaugural award ceremony was held at the Museum. The event included the launch of a book presenting the Discount Bank’s Israeli art collection, edited by the renowned curator Yona Fischer. Present at the event were former bank directors, CEO Ms. Lilach Asher-Tupilski, Mr. Leon Recanati, collection manager Ms. Shulamit Nuss, and members of the bank’s artistic committee: Chairman Yona Fischer, Ms. Roni Gilat-Baharaff, and curators Ms. Irith Hadar and Ms.Roni Cohen-Binyamini. Also present were Mayor of Herzliya, Moshe Fadlon; Yehuda Ben Ezra, Director General of Herzliya Municipality; and the Museum’s Director, Dr. Aya Lurie.