4th Cobra Art Prize 2011 won by Nathaniel Mellors. He creates absurdist scripts, psychedelic theatre, films, videos, performance, collages and sculpture in which he tests the boundaries between meaning and incomprehensibility. A recurring theme in his multifaceted work is the complex relationship between language and power, which he incorporates in narratives that betray a penchant for satire and the grotesque. In addition to his visual work, Mellors also plays bass guitar in the Advanced Sportswear band and is co-founder of Junior Aspirin Records.
The prize was award to Mellors because of his completely unique visual world and the powerful impact that his work has on viewers. His inventive crossovers between visual art, music, theatre and text fit perfectly with the spirit of the multidisciplinary engagement of the CoBrA artists.
The 2011 jury consisted of Dominic van den Boogerd (director De Ateliers in Amsterdam), Xander Karskens (curator De Hallen in Haarlem), Saskia van Kampen (curator Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam) and Katja Weitering (artistic director Cobra Museum of Modern Art in Amstelveen).