The Turner Prize 2014

Monday 12 May 2014

The Turner Prize

The Turner Prize is always a barometer of the times. This doesn't mean it's what we want to see or that it's neccessarily good art, but it is indicative of what is happening in the art world right now.  As IB art intends to broaden the scope and embrace more emerging media it might be useful to look at the current Turner Prize nominees as a gauge of current art making trends. In the case of these four artists, Emerging Media involves approriation, gathering, collating and recombining existing material into something new.

 The Shortlisted Artists 2014

This year, the coveted Turner Prize shortlisted artists are Duncan Campbell, Ciara Phillips, James Richards and Tris Vonna-Michell.

None of the artists is well-known outside the contemporary art world,

Campbell, Dublin-born and Glasgow-based, is best known for his films, which weave fact and fiction to present portraits of provocative subjects.

He is nominated for a show in which he screened Chris Marker and Alain Resnais's 1953 film Statues Also Die alongside his response – a film that featured choreography by Michael Clark and explored the commercialisation of African art.

Vonna-Michell, who grew up in Southend, is known for fast-paced live storytelling which sometimes uses slide projections, photocopies and found images.

Phillips is shortlisted for a show in London in which she was inspired by a pioneering artist called Corita Kent, who died in 1986. She produces screenprints, textiles, photographs and wall paintings to create art as site-specific installations.

Richards is shortlisted for his show in Venice in which he "created poetic meditations on the pleasure, sensuality and the voyeurism that is within the act of looking".

The four artists will now use or create work for a Turner prize exhibition at Tate Britain from 30 September with the £25,000 winner named on 1 December.[1]

There isn't a painter or sculptor in the traditional sense among them. All four artists are difficult to categorize, using techniques that include film, storytelling, youtube clips, spoken word, photocopies, found images, slide projections, installation and screenprinting. You could say that they are all collagists, often using appropriated images and films they have physically discovered or found online rather than images created directly by the artist.

The nomination announcement on the BBC said the four artists' methods "suggest the impact of the internet, cinema, TV and mobile technologies on a new generation of artists".

Emerging Media

Although emerging media often includes technology as part of the process, it isnt neccessarily digitally made. Emerging media is a term that refers to media that explores new territories, the crossroads of art, innovation, technology, science, communication, collaborative practices, social activism, appropriation, open sourcing...

What uses of emerging media can your students come up with for each of these categories?

Appropriation- using material from other sources

Social networking- social expression?

Collaborative work

For further discussion of emerging media, and examples of artists go to the new emerging media site page.

ps. What is the Turner Prize?

The Turner Prize is a contemporary art award

that was set up in 1984 to celebrate new developments in contemporary art. It is awarded each year to ‘a British artist under fifty for an outstanding exhibition or other presentation of their work in the twelve months preceding’.
Nominations are invited each year, and the prize is judged by an independent jury that changes annually. The four shortlisted artists present works in a show normally held at Tate Britain before the winner is announced in December. Artists are not judged on their show at Tate. The decision is based on the work for which they were nominated.
Over the recent decades the Turner Prize has played a significant role in provoking debate about visual art and the growing public interest in contemporary British art in particular, and has become widely recognised as one of the most important and prestigious awards for the visual arts in Europe.
To view past Turner Prize year by year the Tate website has this archive.


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