Irn-Bru, restitution and Roma history: Turner Prize 2024 nominees revealed

Jasleen Kaur, Alter Altar, 2023 (installation view, Tramway, Glasgow). Photo: Keith Hunter. Courtesy Tramway and Glasgow Life.

Explorations of national, local, racial and religious identities dominate the work of the four artists nominated for the Turner Prize, Britain’s most high profile art award. Pio Abad, Claudette Johnson, Jasleen Kaur and Delaine Le Bas will each receive £10,000 and be in line to win the £25,00 final prize. An exhibition of their work will open in September at Tate Britain, marking the 40th anniversary of the prize.

Nominated for his solo exhibition To Those Sitting in Darkness at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, Abad’s work draws on the history of the Philippines through drawing, etchings and sculptures which depict, juxtapose and transform artefacts from Oxford museums. The Turner jury commended ‘the precision and elegance with which Abad combines research with new artistic work to ask questions of museums.’

Johnson was chosen for her figurative portraits of Black women and men in a combination of pastels, gouache and watercolour, shown at Presence, her solo exhibitions at The Courtauld Gallery, London, and Drawn Out at Ortuzar Projects, New York. Kaur got the nod following her solo exhibition, Alter Altar, at Tramway, Glasgow, a semi-autobiographical exploration of cultural inheritance and the artist’s upbringing in Glasgow’s Sikh community utilising family photos, an Axminster carpet, a vintage Ford Escort covered in a giant doily, Irn-Bru and kinetic hand bells.

The jury, which included Rosie Cooper, director of Wysing Arts Centre; broadcaster Ekow Eshun; Sam Thorne, director general at Japan House London; and curator Lydia Yee, picked Le Bas as their final choice for her presentation Incipit Vita Nova. Here Begins The New Life/A New Life Is Beginning at Secession, Vienna, in which she drew on Roma culture and her interest in mythologies, transforming the gallery into an immersive performative environment hung with painted fabrics and filled with theatrical costumes and sculptures.

The winner will be announced at Tate Britain on 3 December 2024.

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