Flemish Culture Prizes get new name and single ceremony


Flanders’ cultural prizes in music, film, visual arts and a number of other disciplines are going back to their roots, with a single awards ceremony

Mark 13 June on the calendar

The Flemish Culture Prizes, given out annually since 2003 in a variety of artistic disciplines, are being re-named the Ultimas of Flemish Culture, culture minister Sven Gatz has announced. The name comes from the bronze sculpture by Antwerp artist Philip Aguirre y Otegui that winners receive, which is called “La Ultima Isla”, or The Last Island.

The awards will also revert back to the original method used – all at one time in a single ceremony. Over the last few years, they have been awarded throughout the year, with the result that some prizes received less attention than others.

This year the awards ceremony will take place on 13 June in Ghent. “The ceremony is intended to bring the whole cultural world together regardless of discipline,” Gatz said. “That’s how you get cross-pollination, while the sector gets a moment to celebrate together. The award of the Ultimas will be the perfect moment to look back on the cultural year gone by, and that deserves a party.”

The Ultimas go to a Flemish artist, or an artist living in Flanders, who made an outstanding contribution in the following disciplines: film, stage, music, letters, architecture or design, amateur arts, local culture policy, visual arts, cultural enterprise, social-cultural work with adults, immaterial heritage and general cultural services. In some cases, two disciplines alternate year by year. 

Photo: Cinemaximiliaan won the 2015 Culture Prize for Social Cultural enterprise

©Courtesy Socius