Ilana Harris-Babou and Mateo Nava have been named the recipients of the National YoungArts Foundation’s 2020 Jorge M. Pérez Award. The $25,000 prize, which is funded by the Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation, was established to support emerging and midcareer artists who have demonstrated artistic excellence.  Selected by arts patron Jorge M. Pérez, the founder of the development firm The Related Group, and Patricia García-Vélez Hanna, the company’s art director, Harris-Babou and Nava will each receive $12,500.

“The Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation is proud to support organizations like YoungArts that are dedicated to nurturing and cultivating the next generation of artists throughout the US,” said Pérez. “This year’s award grantees, Ilana and Mateo, have shown incredible talent and future promise, and we are happy to support their creative journeys as they continue to grow in their respective fields.”

Harris-Babou, a Brooklyn-born and Massachusetts-based artist, works primarily in video, but her practice spans sculpture and installation. Known for confronting the contradictions of the American Dream, she has had solo exhibitions at the Museum of Arts and Design and the New York galleries Larrie and 80WSE. Nava, a Miami-based, multidisciplinary artist creates paintings, drawings, collage, and sculpture that focus on pattern and iconography in relationship to Latin American visual tradition. Nava is currently an artist-in-residence at Miami’s ProjectArt and an art faculty member at Design and Architecture Senior High.

The announcement of the 2020 Jorge M. Pérez Award winners took place at YoungArts’s annual Backyard Ball performance and gala. The Jorge M. Pérez Award is one of two major awards given by National YoungArts Foundation as part of its range of initiatives which seek to offer creative and professional support for artists.

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