Eighties pop star wins 25,000 Turner Prize for abstract video piece (beating beard-wearing nudist called Spartacus and sculptures shaped like human faeces)
21:09 GMT, 3 December 2012
An eighties pop star has scooped this year’s Turner Prize – beating a nudist and a sculptor that makes models of human faeces.
Elizabeth Price, 45, formerly of obscure pop group Talula Gosh, won the 25,000 accolade for her abstract film based on a fire tragedy.
The artist made her name with films featuring old pop music and is the least well-known of the shortlist.
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Winner announced: Elizabeth Price, a London-based musician, was presented the Turner Prize today by actor Jude Law at Tate Britain gallery
She beat the bookies’ favourite, Paul Noble, 48, who impressed judges with his drawings and sculptures depicting cities made up of human faeces.
Also hotly tipped to win was performance artist Spartacus Chetwynd, 38, a nudist who changed her name from Lali two years ago in tribute to the legendary gladiator.
Price’s 15 minute production combines news footage and first-hand accounts of the 1979 fire at Woolworths in Manchester, which killed ten people.
A visitor views Turner Prize nominee Elizabeth Price's video installation 'The Woolworths Choir Of 1979 2012'
Star attraction: Spartacus Chetwynd (pictured), a nudist who changed her name from Lali two years ago in tribute to the legendary gladiator, had been tipped to win
Getting involved: A live performance piece by Spartacus Chetwynd
In what was described as the city’s worst fire disaster since World War II, staff were trapped on the roof and behind barred windows while foam fillings in the furniture fuelled the flames.
And in a wacky twist, the film also includes old clips of old pop music records and some documentary material about ecclesiastical history.
Organisers of the prize described her work, named The Woolworths Choir of 1979, as ‘moving between social history, fiction and fantasy’.
Turner Prize nominee Paul Noble's 'Small Three (Noir et Blanc) 2011' marble sculpture is based on excrement
Involved: A visitor looks at a video screen featured in the Turner Prize nominated exhibition at Tate Britain
They added: ‘Price’s videos draw the viewer into an imagined institutional structure where we are both consumers and consumed, seducing the audience and commanding it in equal measure.’
Born in Bradford in 1966, Price grew up in Luton and formed Talula Gosh aged 20 in 1986 with friends at Oxford University, where she was studying for a BA in fine art.
They released several hits including ‘Beatnik Boy’ and ’Steaming Train’ under the niche banner of ‘twee pop’ before Price left two years later.
She was presented with the prize by Jude Law last night at Tate Britain in central London, while the other shortlisted artists each received 5,000.
Also shortlisted abstract film-maker Luke Fowler, 34, whose work depicts the lives and ideas of famous figures.
The prize, established in 1984, is awarded to a British artist under 50 who is judged to have put on the best exhibition of work in the previous 12 months.
The exhibition's main feature is a green papier-mch 'oracle' which tells visitors 'visions of the future'
A scene from Turner Prize nominee Spartacus Chetwynd's exhibition 'Odd Man Out 2011'. The Turner Prize is presented to an artist aged under 50, living, working or born in Britain
A visitor looks at one of the marble sculptures by Paul Noble which are modelled on excrement
VIDEO: Curator of Tate Britain talks about the artists…
THE SHORTLIST FOR THE TURNER PRIZE 2012
Paul Noble, 48, from London (5/4)
Noble has spent 15 years drawing Nobson Newtown, a fictional world populated by human excrement engaged in public sex acts. Included in his most recent show, Welcome to Nobson, are two sculptures depicting faeces and a drawing of a mound of stones called ‘Cathedral’.
Spartacus Chetwynd, 38, from London (11/4)
A performance artist who lives in a nudist colony, Chetwynd has been shortlisted for her five-hour play called Odd Man Out. Audience members were invited to determine its outcome via secret ballot. Previous plays include An Evening with Jabba the Hut, in which she aimed to re-cast the villain from Return of the Jedi as a ‘Stevie Wonder’ character.
Elizabeth Price, 45, from London (11/4)
A former pop star, Price attracted a niche following in the eighties with her ‘twee pop’ band, Talulah Gosh. She now makes abstract videos, with her latest work, West Hinder, featuring a fleet of luxury cars performing a synchronised swimming routine in a bid to escape drowning.
Luke Fowler, 34, from Glasgow (9/2)
Fowler is an abstract film-maker who aims to depict the lives and ideas of famous figures. His most recent film, All Divided Selves, explores the theories of the Scottish psychiatrist R.D.Laing. Fowler mixes archive material with new footage to examine the experience of someone with mental illness.
*Odds according to William Hill