On Thursday, December 15, 2016, Their Majesties King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands accompanied by Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands, Their Royal Highnesses Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands and Her Royal Highness Princess Mabel of Oranje-Nassau attended the 2016 Prins Claus Prijs held at the Koninklijk Paleis in Amsterdam.
The Prins Claus Prijs is awarded annually to individuals and organizations based mainly in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean for their outstanding achievements in the field of culture and development and the positive effect of their work on their direct environment and the wider cultural or social field.
Traditionally, the Fund has presented one Principal Award and ten additional Awards. On this 20th anniversary year, the Fund is taking a somewhat different approach. It has selected a smaller number of Laureates than usual and, in addition to the Award, which is given in recognition of their excellent achievements, the Fund has created the opportunity for each of the five Laureates to support a project that they feel expands and enhances creativity in their own environment.
The winner of the Prins Claus Prijs went to writer and director, Mr. Apichatpong Weerasethakul, for his:
“…visual richness, spiritual lyricism and intellectual depth of his provocative works; for his subtle yet powerful examination of Thai realities that resonates beyond his own society; for inventing an original cinematic language that evokes a live experience of the animist sense of being, reinstating a way of connecting paralyzed by western mechanisms that disrupt the body’s ability to evaluate what is good for life and what isn’t; for transforming filmmaking into something far more complex and far-reaching, clearly demonstrating that artistic excellence creates experience and is inseparable from the social and political; and for inspiring others by remaining uncompromisingly true to his own vision and principles…”