Turner Prize 2014
30 September 2014 – 4 January 2015
Works by the four finalists of the contemporary art prize, which is celebrating its 30th year.
There are no traditional painters or sculptors on the 2014 shortlist – unusual perhaps, even for the Turner Prize. Since it was first founded in 1984 the prize's very raison d'être has been to promote the discussion of new developments in contemporary British art, so it is with interest that we should regard this year's eclectic selection of finalists.
Previous winners have included some of the most prominent artists working in Britain today; Tracey Emin, Jeremy Deller, Grayson Perry and Rachel Whiteread for example. Chair of the judges and director of Tate Britain Penelope Curtis boldly admits the 2014 shortlist includes some 'less well-known' names; Duncan Campbell, Ciara Phillips, James Richards and Tris Vonna-Michell. Their work ranges from fact-and-fiction blurring film to fast-paced spoken word live performances and prints produced in collaborative open workshops. Curtis says that the list recognises that art is produced 'not just in the studio'.
Duncan Campbell was announced as the winner of the £25,000 prize on 1 December.
The Turner Prize honours an artist under 50 for work produced in the 12 months preceding 17 April 2014. This exhibition at Tate Britain is a chance to see the works they were nominated for.
Campbell was nominated for his contribution to Scotland’s pavilion at the Venice Biennale – a response to Chris Marker and Alan Resnais' 1953 film Statues Also Die. Campbell's piece challenges the typical documentary form, mixing archive footage with new material by choreographer Michael Clark that explores the commercialisation of African art.
Phillips was nominated for her exhibition at London’s The Showroom gallery, for which she turned the space into a print workshop and invited designers, artists and local women’s groups to come and participate. The prints they produced were inspired by the work of artist, educator and activist Corita Kent, who reinterpreted advertising slogans of 1960s consumer culture.
Richards was nominated for his contribution to The Encyclopaedic Palace at the Venice Biennale – a film featuring close-ups of purposefully defaced art books he found in a Tokyo library. Monographs by Man Ray, Mapplethorpe and Tillmans had had the genitalia removed with sandpaper in order to comply with Japanese censorship laws that forbid a library from holding images that might induce arousal in a viewer.
Vonna-Michell has been nominated for his solo exhibition Postscript (Berlin) at Jan Mot, Brussels. Using fast-paced spoken word live performances and audio recordings he weaves multilayered stories, characterised by fragments of information, detours and dead ends.