White Columns and Shoot The Lobster are proud to announce that Lia Gangitano - the founder and director of New York’s PARTICIPANT Inc. - is the inaugural recipient of the ‘White Columns / Shoot The Lobster Award’, a new annual award that will be presented to individuals – geniuses, if you like - who selflessly create a context for artists’ ideas and also seek to build communities around them. For more than twenty years Gangitano has championed artists whose ideas have helped expand our understanding not only of what art is but what art might actually be. Writing about Gangitano in 2015 in The New Yorker critic Andrea K. Scott suggested: “As talk of art fairs and auction results becomes deafening, Gangitano’s advocacy of the fringe feels radical.”

There are a number of awards for artists – both emerging and established – but few for the people who help artists to realize their ambitions. The ‘White Columns / Shoot The Lobster Award’ will be given each year to an individual who works, often for little personal gain, to create opportunities for both artists and audiences alike. The recipient receives an unrestricted $5,000 cash award and a specially commissioned artwork.

The ‘White Columns / Shoot The Lobster Award’ is generously supported by Shoot The Lobster and administered by White Columns. About Lia Gangitano: A former associate curator at Boston’s ICA, and a curator at New York’s Thread Waxing Space, Lia founded PARTICIPANT Inc., a not-for-profit art space on the Lower East Side of New York, in 2001. At PARTICIPANT Inc. she has presented more than 100 exhibitions, performances and screenings with a diverse community of artists, curators, performers, filmmakers and musicians, including the widely celebrated 2014 survey of Greer Lankton’s life and art ‘Love Me.’

For further information about PARTICIPANT Inc.’s programs please visit: www.participantinc.org
For more about White Columns visit: www.whitecolumns.org