Art21's "New York Close Up" Nominated In the 16th Annual Webby Awards

Art21's "New York Close Up" Nominated for Best Documentary Series, Online Film & Video In the 16th Annual Webby Awards

New Series About New York Artists Up For Internet's Top Honor Fans Can Vote Online at pv.webbyawards.com

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VISIT: New York Close Up; The Webby Awards

April 11, 2012 – for immediate release:

New York, NY — Art21 announced today that it has been nominated for Best Documentary Series for Online Film & Video in the 16th Annual Webby Awards. Art21, the Peabody-Award winning producer of Art in the Twenty-First Century, which premieres its sixth season on PBS this Friday April 13, created the New York Close Up series to focus on artists in the first decade of their career working in New York City.

Hailed as the "Internet's highest honor" by The New York Times, The Webby Awards, presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS), is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet. The IADAS, which nominates and selects The Webby Award Winners, is comprised of web industry experts, including media mogul Arianna Huffington, Skype CEO Tony Bates, Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom, and Mikael Hed, CEO of Rovio, creators of the Webby Award-winning game app Angry Birds.

Featured artists in the New York Close Up series thus far include rising art stars such as LaToya Ruby Frazier (currently featured in the Whitney Biennial), Rashid Johnson (currently having a major solo exhibition at the MCA Chicago), Lucas Blalock, Martha Colburn, Keltie Ferris, Tommy Hartung, Kalup Linzy, Shana Moulton, Mariah Robertson and Mika Tajima. While Art21's ongoing series Art in the Twenty-First Century focuses on a global roster of established artists, New York Close Up allows Art21 (a nonprofit based in New York) to follow younger artists closely over time by filming in its own backyard, revealing new kinds of intimate stories that are about both art and life in the city. All New York Close Up films can be viewed at art21.org/newyorkcloseup.

"We are deeply honored to have such rapid and major recognition for New York Close Up so soon after its creation," said Series Creators Wesley Miller and Nick Ravich. "The Webby nomination is an exciting validation of our instincts for the series, which we've structured as a long-term collaboration with the artists we film. It also comes at an interesting time for us, as we grow our ambitions for how the series can evolve in the future, and discover audiences that we always hoped would be there for these stories about being a young artist in New York City." Participating New York Close Up artist LaToya Ruby Frazier added: "My experience with Art21 New York Close Up has been invaluable, enabling me to challenge misconceptions of my artwork. It has created a framework of social dialogue for all viewers that has never before existed."

"Nominees like Art21 are setting the standard for innovation and creativity on the Internet," said David-Michel Davies, Executive Director of The Webby Awards. "It is an incredible achievement to be selected among the best from the nearly 10,000 entries we received this year."

As a nominee, Art21 is also eligible to win a Webby People's Voice Award, which is voted online by fans across the globe. From now until April 26th, Art21 fans can cast their votes at pv.webbyawards.com.

Winners will be announced on Tuesday, May 1, 2012 and honored at a star-studded ceremony on Monday, May 21, 2012 at The Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City, where they will have an opportunity to deliver one of The Webby Awards' famous 5-Word Speeches. Highlights from last year's 5-Word Speeches include: Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour: "Sometimes, geeks can be chic."; IBM supercomputer Watson: "Person of the year. Ironic."; and Agency of the Year Winner Wieden + Kennedy: "Anonymous, we thank you, anonymously."

For a full list of last year's 5-Word Speeches, please visit webbyawards.com/press/speeches.php.

About Art21

Art21 is a non-profit art organization which provides broad-based audiences access to contemporary art and artists by documenting the artists of our time for television and the Internet, providing companion educational materials, and teaching educators. In the past decade, Art21 has used the power of digital media to introduce millions of people of all ages worldwide to contemporary art and artists, creating a new paradigm for teaching and learning about the creative process. All of Art21's materials, including full episodes of Art in the Twenty-First Century, New York Close Up, exclusive Web videos, and education resources, are made available for free online at art21.org.

About The Webby Awards

Hailed as the "Internet's highest honor" by the The New York Times, The Webby Awards is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet, including Websites, interactive advertising & media, online film & video, and mobile & apps. Established in 1996, the 16th Annual Webby Awards received nearly 10,000 entries from all 50 states and over 60 countries worldwide. The Webby Awards is presented by The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences. Sponsors and Partners of The Webby Awards include: Yahoo!, Vitamin T, MLB Advanced Media, Rackspace Hosting, JWT, The Atom Group, Financial Times, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Guardian News and Media.

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Contact
Eve Moros Ortega
212-741-7133 x22
eve [AT] art21.org