Gina Allen (First Prize), Vivacity

Gina Allen (First Prize), Vivacity

80 x 50 x 0.2 cm, car dirt on canvas, 2020

Gina works in collaboration with researchers, technologists and individuals who have experienced tangible impacts of environmental issues, aiming to ‘make the invisible visible’. ‘’Vivacity’ is a portrait of Ella Kissi-Debrah, who died at the age of nine having suffered with extremely severe asthma. Ella has since become the first person in the world to have air pollution legally recognised as a cause of death.  Gina made the series of images showing Ella across her too short lifetime, which show her vivacity as well as her increasing illness. The works are made using dirt collected from the wheels and exhausts of cars. Traffic exhaust fumes and brake dust are contributors to pollutants in the air, and so the images have been created with some of the same materials that are likely to have contributed to her illness. This artwork has been produced with agreement of the Ella’s Estate. All images of Ella are copyright.



27 September 2021


Art Prize Shortlist 2021