Artist and Stuckist spokeswoman Jasmine Maddock (pictured above) reviews this year’s contenders:
Angela de la Cruz
This is the worst exhibit. Her work looks like the rubbish in a skip outside an art school. It’s the kind of thing a retarded bulldog would produce in its sleep. It looks like blind removal men have massacred the furniture. It looks like origami by an orang-utan on heat. I sympathise with her PMT problems, but she shouldn’t take it out on her canvases. It’s cruelty to canvases. How would she feel if a canvas crumpled her up? There are artists who can’t afford to buy materials. She can, but she obviously doesn’t know how to use them properly. A one trick pony without a proper trick.
The Tate said, “De la Cruz uses the language of painting and sculpture to create striking works that combine formal tension with a deeper emotional presence.”
It’s just someone singing in an empty room. It’s not art. It’s music. They don’t give the Mercury Music Prize to a painter. They shouldn’t give the Turner Prize to a singer. It’s pretentious. People have iPods for music. They come to the Tate to see art. She’s meant to be original singing in a supermarket, but Tiffany did it twenty years ago. Philipsz is praised for singing under bridges and in other unusual places. However, this is often done by people nationwide at pub closing time. Her observation that a river is darker under a bridge resembles a soundbite from George Bush on YouTube.
The Tate said, “Philipsz uses her own voice to create uniquely evocative sound installations that play upon and extend the poetics of specific, often out-of-the-way spaces.”
The Otolith Group
It’s like going in Radio Rentals. Twenty TVs all on at the same time is not twenty times more meaningful. A room full of blank screens would be more interesting. It’s trite and cliché in art. This is probably why the Tate think it’s innovative. It’s a sad attempt to be trendy. It’s a sixth form student’s Windows Movie Maker film, put through a kitchen blender by an out of control blind robot. The Tate, funded by the pubic, doles out money to lame film makers, who stand no chance in the competitive commercial arena of what the public actually wants. The Otolith Group said, “the world doesn’t need any more films” — certainly not from them.
The Tate said, “The collaborative and discursive practice of The Otolith Group questions the nature of documentary history across time by using material found within a range of disciplines, in particular the moving image.”
It’s proper art. What’s it doing in the Turner Prize? Under Serota no figurative painter has won the Prize, unless you count balls of elephant droppings. Hopefully the new Tate Britain director, Penelope Curtis, is reversing the prejudice of the Serota years. Figurative artists have been Siberianised for the last two decades. His inclusion highlights all the other figurative painters, many far better than him, who have never been nominated. Dexter is a Postmodern plonker, copying bits of other people’s paintings. When he has the confidence to create original images, he is a good artist. At least he knows the point of it is not to smash up the canvas.
The Tate said, “…the rich depth and range of his approach to making painting that draws upon historical tradition as well as contemporary cultural and political events.”
First posted: Monday, December 6th, 2010.