Friday, December 7, 2007

Mark Wallinger

That 48 year old Mark Wallinger won this year's Turner Prize is no huge surprise. Nominated once before in 1995 (when he lost to Damian Hirst), Wallinger was the senior artist of the shortlist, which also included Mike Nelson, Zarina Bhimji and Nathan Coley. Perhaps ironically referencing Wallinger's 1994 racehorse work "A Real Work of Art", British bookies earlier this week took £12,500 in bets, with Wallinger the favorite to win with odds of 6/1.

The artist is best known for "Ecce Homo", a statue of Christ that occupied Trafalgar Square's fourth plinth in London in 1999 and for the film "Sleeper", which was considered one of the standouts at the 2005 Venice Biennial. The Tate purchased Sleeper last year and "State Britain" (a recreation of Brian Hawe's 40 metre long protest at the house of Parliament) exhibited at the Tate in January of this year.

The prize was awarded at the Tate Liverpool, marking the first time the ceremony was held outside of London.

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