Monument Lab Announces its Promument 2024 honorees Sonya Clark and Ken Lum

Monument Lab is thrilled to announce our honorees for Promument 2024 – Declaration House’s Sonya Clark will receive the Monumental Artist Award, and Monument Lab co-founder Ken Lum will receive the Changemaker Award.

“This year at Promument, we honor two brilliant, visionary, and dear long-time collaborators with a special ceremony” says Paul Farber, Director of Monument Lab. “For Ken, his role as a co-founder of Monument Lab, from our earliest days in the classroom and public spaces, has been nothing short of transformative for our team and for the broader field of monument changemakers. He opened doors for so many of us, including me, to find our paths.” 

“For Sonya, she is an artist who has changed the ways we access, conjure, and gather around historical narratives. Through her work as the lead artist on our upcoming Monument Lab project, Declaration House in Philadelphia’s Independence National Historical Park shines as a beacon of creative reflection, belonging, and possibility.”

Past honorees include Salamishah Tillet, Clint Smith, Michelle Angela Ortiz, and Karyn Olivier. 

Join the Monument Lab board, staff, partners, and friends in celebrating Sonya Clark and Ken Lum on May 23, 2024 at the Independence Park Visitor Center in Philadelphia! Purchase an All-Access ticket for Promument 2024, Monument Lab’s Annual Fundraising Event, which includes an Awards Ceremony and Reception to honor these beloved and esteemed honorees.

2024 Monumental Artist Award | Sonya Clark

Sonya Clark is an artist and the Winifred L. Arms Professor of Art and Humanities at Amherst College in Massachusetts. Previously, she held a University Professorship in the School of the Arts at Virginia Commonwealth University where she served as chair for the Craft/Material Studies Department for over a decade. She earned an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art and was honored with their Distinguished Alumni Award in 2011. She holds a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she received an honorary doctorate in 2023. Her first college degree is from Amherst College where, in 2015, she also received an honorary doctorate. In 2021, she was awarded additional honorary doctorates from Franklin and Marshall College and Maine College of Art. Her work has been exhibited in over 500 museums and galleries in the Americas, Africa, Asia, Europe and Australia. Clark is the recipient of many awards including a United States Artist Fellowship, Anonymous Was a Woman Award, Rappaport Prize, Art Prize, Pollock Krasner Award, and two Art Matters Grants. She been an artist at the Red Gate Residency in China, the BAU Camargo Residency in France, the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Residency in Italy, the Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship in DC, the Civitella Ranieri Residency in Italy, Yaddo Residency in NY, Affiliate Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome, Indigo Arts Alliance in Maine, Black Rock Senegal Residency, and Bogliasco in Italy. Her work has been favorably reviewed in the New York Times, Le Monde, Sculpture, Art in America, Philadelphia Inquirer, Washington Post, Time, Los Angeles Times, Hyperallergic, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, ArtForum, PBS, NPR, BBC and many others. Learn more about her work here

Listen to this conversation about uncovering the history and meaning of the Confederate Truce Flag between Sonya Clark and Monument Lab Director Paul Farber from 2019. Sonya Clark is the featured artist for Declaration House, a Monument Lab project opening this summer in Philadelphia’s Independence National Historical Park. 

2024 Monument Changemaker Award | Ken Lum

Ken Lum is the Marilyn Jordan Taylor Presidential Professor and Chair of the Department of Fine Arts at the Stuart Weitzman School of Design, University of Pennsylvania. He has previously taught at the University of British Columbia, École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Akademie der Bildenden Kunst in Munich, California College of the Arts in San Francisco, China Art Academy in Hangzhou, and Bard College.

Lum is the co-founder and founding editor of Yishu Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art and has published extensively. His book of writings, "Everything is Relevant: Writings on Art and Life", was published in 2021 by Concordia University Press. He has given keynote addresses at the annual congress of the International Association of Empirical Aesthetics in Philadelphia, the inauguration of the Melly Project Space in Rotterdam, the World Museums Conference in Shanghai, and the 2006 Biennale of Sydney in Australia. Lum was the Project Manager for the seminal exhibition "The Short Century: Independence and Liberation Movements in Africa 1945 – 1994" in 2001. He was the co-curator of the 7th Sharjah Biennial in 2001 and "Shanghai Modern: 1919 – 1945" in the same year. Lum has exhibited widely, including at the São Paulo Biennial in 1998, Shanghai Biennale in 2000, Documenta 11 in 2002, Istanbul Biennial in 2007, and the Gwangju Biennale in 2008. He has also made permanent public art commissions for Vienna, Vancouver, Utrecht, Leiden, St. Moritz, Toronto, and St. Louis.  He is the winner of several awards, including the Scotiabank Photography Award, the Order of Canada, a Pew Fellowship, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

He is represented by Magenta Plains Gallery, New York, Royale Projects, Los Angeles, Misa Shin Gallery, Tokyo, and Gallery Nagel Draxler, Berlin. Ken is co-founder of Monument Lab and currently serves as Chief Curatorial Advisor. Learn more about his work here.