Turner Prize, 2009
Richard Wright won the Turner Prize last night. To my mind he is a worthy winner. His work is ephemeral and beautiful, tailored specifically to each site and then destroyed forever after the show.
For me it was always between him and Roger Hiorns. Hiorns created ‘Seizure‘ – a low rise filled with copper sulphate crystals which I (and so many other people) adored for both it’s ideas and execution. Richard Wright’s gold leaf fresco – so much like an antique carpet crossed with a Rorschach ink blot – had that same sensibility. Its beauty made it enticing and instantly pleasant to engage with but the skill of the artist as an artist rather than interior designer meant that after the initial punch the work followed up with more – quieter – revelations.
The mortality Wright gives his work adds to its appeal. Knowing that after the show the gold leaf will simply be painted over runs completely counter to the business of art and there’s a perverse pleasure in that. After all, well loved art is usually the key to immortality – Rembrandt is still breaking financial records over 300 years after the artist died.
Did you think Wright deserved to win or did you prefer one of the other nominees? Perhaps you didn’t like any of them? Perhaps you thought an entirely different artist should have been nominated?
I would be interested to know – leave a comment and tell me what you thought :)