Turner Prize 2005
The four artists who have been shortlisted for the Turner Prize 2005 are Darren Almond, Gillian Carnegie, Jim Lambie and Simon Starling.
Last year, Gordon's increased the value of the Turner Prize to £40,000, with £25,000 being awarded to the winner and £5,000 each to the other shortlisted artists. The Prize, established in 1984, is awarded to a British artist under fifty for an outstanding exhibition or other presentation of their work in the twelve months preceding 9 May 2005. It is intended to promote public discussion of new developments in contemporary British art and is widely recognised as one of the most important and prestigious awards for the visual arts in Europe.
Work by the shortlisted artists will be shown. The winner will be announced at Tate Britain on 5 December during a live broadcast by Channel 4.
These profiles of the four shortlisted artists have been made by An Illuminations television production for Channel 4 directed by Danny McGuire and produced by Linda Zuck.
The members of the Turner Prize 2005 jury are:
Louisa Buck, London contemporary art correspondent, The Art Newspaper Kate Bush, Head of Art Galleries, Barbican Art Gallery
Caoimhin Mac Giolla Leith, art critic and Lecturer, Modern Irish Department, University College Dublin
Eckhard Schneider, Director, Kunsthaus Bregenz
Nicholas Serota, Director, Tate and Chairman of the Jury
Darren Almond uses sculpture, film and photography, and real-time satellite broadcast to explore the effects of time on the individual. Harnessing the symbolic and emotional potential of objects, places and situations, he produces works which have universal as well as personal resonances.
Ideas about memory permeate much of Almond’s work. The four-screen video installation shown here, If I Had You 2003, focuses on the personal memories of his widowed grandmother. Almond filmed her as she revisited Blackpool, where she had spent her honeymoon, for the first time since her husband’s death twenty years earlier. She watches a lone couple dancing in the famous Tower Ballroom. The soundtrack combines a gentle piano melody with sliding footsteps, discernible in each corner of the gallery. Their circular movement echoes the turning sails and creaking mechanism of an illuminated windmill from Blackpool’s promenade; Almond’s poignant metaphor for the reality of passing time and the inevitability of death.
Gillian Carnegie works within traditional categories of painting - still life, landscape, the figure and portraiture - with a highly accomplished technique. Yet while apparently following the conventions of representational painting, Carnegie challenges its established languages and unsettles its assumptions.
Carnegie often works in series, returning to the same subject but varying her approach each time. Her ongoing series of ‘bum paintings’ are experiments in composition, light, colour and technique. In other works, Carnegie capitalises on the tension between subject and medium, her brush strokes both affirming and contradicting what they depict. In Waltz I 2005, part of her ongoing series of still lifes, the background drapery breaks down into broad, crude brushstrokes which threaten to overwhelm the carefully worked vase. In Section 2005 the eye is drawn back to the image surface through incongruous marks that seem to serve no descriptive function other than to confuse our perception of space.
Jim Lambie takes the ephemera of modern life and transforms it into vibrant sculptural installations. Working with items immediately to hand, as well as those sourced in second-hand and hardware stores, he resurrects record decks, speakers, clothing, accessories, doors and mirrors to form sculptural elements in larger compositions. Lambie prioritises sensory pleasure over intellectual response. He selects materials that are familiar and have a strong personal resonance, so that they offer a way into the work as well as a springboard to a psychological space beyond.
Lambie’s works are often devised in relation to a specific space, where they are shaped by a series of intuitive and improvisatory decisions. This enables him to work in tune with the qualities of his materials and the parameters of the existing architecture.
Simon Starling is fascinated by the processes involved in transforming one object or substance into another. He makes objects, installations, and pilgrimage-like journeys which draw out an array of ideas About nature, technology and economics. Starling describes his work as ‘the physical manifestation of a thought process’, revealing hidden histories and relationships.
For Tabernas Desert Run 2004, Starling crossed the Tabernas desert in Spain on an improvised electric bicycle. The only waste product the vehicle produced was water, which he used to paint an illustration of a cactus. The contrast between the supremely efficient cactus and the contrived efforts of man is both comic and insightful, highlighting the commercial exploitation of natural resources in the region.
Shedboatshed (Mobile Architecture No 2) 2005 has a similar circularity. Starling dismantled a shed and turned it into a boat; loaded with the remains of the shed, the boat was paddled down the Rhine to a museum in Basel, dismantled and re-made into a shed.Both pilgrimages, provide a kind of buttress against the pressures of modernity, mass production and global capitalism.
Starling’s new work One Ton, II 2005 focuses attention on energy consumption: the huge amounts of energy used to produce tiny quantities of platinum. One ton of ore, mined from the South African open cast mine pictured in the images, was needed to produce the five handmade platinum prints exhibited here.
Simon Starling has been nominated for his solo exhibitions at The Modern Institute, Glasgow, and the Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona.