Jabu Nadia Newman and Niccolò Masini are the winners of the VAA-Video Art Awards 2nd Edition

Jabu Nadia Newman and Niccolò Masini are the winners of the second edition of the VAA-Video Art Awards, the prize for video artists created by the Luigi Di Sarro Center and realized with the support of the Italian Cultural Institute of Pretoria, of the International Short Short Film Festival Lovere and Rainbow Media NPO. The Awards Ceremony took place (2019, May 14) at the Labia Theatre, in Cape Town.

Jabu Nadia Newman and Niccolò Masini are the two young artists who won the trip-prize offered by the Video Art Awards, the competition for young talents of the moving image that is now in its second year edition between Italy and South Africa. Masini is in Cape Town till the 18th of May and Newman will participate in the Italian short film festival on Lake Iseo next September (24-28).

Niccolò Masini, studies at the IED in Milan and then he graduated in Audio Visual Arts at the GERRIT RIETVELD ACADEMIE in Amsterdam. Masini is a multidisciplinary artist who carries out research in the field of ability to express in space-time and works both as an illustrator and as a graphic designer and artist between Genoa, his hometown, and Montreal, Canada. He won the VAA Award with “White Time”.


Jabu Nadia Newman, studied at UCT, where she graduated in Political Sciences and then specialized in Visual and Media Arts, then she studies cinema and directing at the African Arts Institute. Newman works in film production and parallel continues his artistic research in video art and photography, mainly oriented to the exploration of human and social relations. She won the VAA Award with “Untitled: Friends”.


VAA is a contest dedicated to Video Art, conceived to boost artistic production of moving images and offer a stage to audiovisual experimentation while developing opportunities for exchanging and comparing ideas about today’s environment, economics and culture.
The first edition of VAA was launched as a project between Italy and South Africa in 2018 and it is addressed to emerging artists active in the two countries.

The competition recognizes each year a selection of works worthy of international promotion and indicates a selection of finalist works for each country that, together with the winners, are shown to the public at the Awards Ceremony held in South Africa and Italy.
The names of the finalist selection: Olivia Botha, Hemali Khoosal, Francois Knoetze and Phu- mulani Ntuli for South Africa; Apotropia, Citron/Lunardi, Alef Grillo and Loi&Mangiasciutti for Italy.

Alessandra Atti Di Sarro, Director of the project, explains and underlines that the goal of this initia- tive is creating a bridge between Italy and South Africa, promoting and enhancing cultural debate between the two countries.
“The selection of the works (10 finalists out of 33 applications) represents a cross-section of arti- stic research in the moving image field. This year’s proposed theme is Interconnections: Identity and Legacy, a very complex and topical subject in today’s times. The works produced bravely contend with strong concepts such as cultural and gender identity as well as the relationship between technology, artificial intelligence and humankind”.




The applications received at the Call were evaluated by Marco Albertario, Director of the Acca- demia Tadini for the cortoLovere Festival, Angelo Capasso, Art Historian and Art Critic, Wendy Fredriksson, Filmmaker and Independent Curator, Fabio Troisi, Director of the Italian Cultural Institute of Pretoria, Laura Vincenti, Director of the Cape Town Art Fair and Alessandra Atti Di Sarro, Director and Curator of the International Projects of the Centro Di Sarro.

The Centro Luigi Di Sarro, a non-profit organization based in Rome, has been active in South Africa since 2009 with the ARP-Art Residency project which focuses on artistic residencies for young artists. Since then, twenty artists have travelled between Rome and Cape Town, having the unique opportunity of working in a different context and testing their abilities with an exhibition at the end of their residency.