Colección SOLO, a private art collection and international art patronage project based in Madrid (Spain), has announced the winners of its international sound art award, the PowSOLO Awards, a collaboration between Colección SOLO and Powland Network, an Amsterdam-based collective dedicated to promoting sound art.


Best Sound Art

The €10,000 top prize, Best Sound Art, has been awarded to a piece created in 2020 by the Spanish artist, Enrique del Castillo. It is made up of two hand-made optical readers which run simultaneously to play two rolls of 35 mm film, which, in turn, are printed with a variety of geometrical patterns. These readers translate light into sound, producing an ever-changing stream of compositions. “The pieces are unique compositions with an abstract sound rich in texture,” explains the prize-winning artist.


Discovery of the Year: Menagerie

As well as the first prize, the jury has awarded three runner-up prizes in different categories, each receiving €1,000. The Discovery of the Year award, for the best work discovered in the past year by the sound art platform, has been awarded to Menagerie, by the Stanford-based artist, Nolan Lem. This installation comprises a giant swarm of automatic gun triggers. The repetitive noise of the triggers going off creates a unique soundscape, inviting reflection on the continued incidence of gun violence.


Invention of the Year: Fluid Memory. Fluidic Computer

In the Invention of the Year category, the jury selected Fluid Memory. Fluidic Computer, a sound installation by the Berlin-based Romanian artist, Ioana Vreme Moser. This piece is a computer developed with glass, water and salt, capable of retaining 1 bit of information in each cycle and producing different sound patterns. Aside from its sound art appeal, this piece serves as an investigative model for sustainable computing solutions using water.


Viral of the Year: Bing Bang 850

The third runner-up prize at the PowSOLO Awards is for the most viral work shown on Bing Bang 850 is the most-viewed work by followers on the collective’s Instagram account, a kinetic sculpture by the Swiss artist, Étienne Krähenbüh, made up of numerous metal tubes linked to form a sphere. Like a giant chime, the piece generates sound as they collide.


Special Mention: Auspicio

The PowSOLO Awards jury, made up of Ryuichi Sakamoto, senior staff at Colección SOLO and the founder of Powland Network, Mark Berman, have also decided to award a special mention to the sound installation, Auspicio. Created by the Italian artists Enrico Ascoli and Hilaro Asola, the piece produces a soundscape of birdsong using the gases released during wine fermentation.