ARTYFACTS: Turner prize - Cats and Dogs - Tate Britain

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Turner prize - Cats and Dogs - Tate Britain

I love the Turner Prize. It pokes the establishment in the eye (Turner would be turning in hisĀ grave platoon) and, although, a bit dodgy on the quality front, has produced some wonderful surprises.
Mark Leckey
In this corner, ladies and gentlemen, we have Mark Leckey. I think he'll win because the notes in the room at the end of the exhibition by attendees. were mostly in his favour. His cat film was engaging and played around with the idea of the subject and what is being represented, but art films often do this and nothing else. In practice film art often has far less to say than either psychology or philosophy on the nature of perception and representation.
The cat film was a historical documentary on the role of cats in film from Egyptian statues, reflecting on how statue-like a cat can be. They seem to drift in and out of life. This is exactly what the Egyptians thought, that cats, when mummified, would pass on messages to the God Bastet. We then had Felix and Garfield. Odds on favourite.
Runa Islam
The broken porcelain film immediately held your attention and brings the viewer to a climax of anticipation, but it became repetitive and overlong. With fixed art forms the viewer is in control of what they perceive and for how long. Not so with film. This is a case where less would have been more.
Her title trace film was similarly flawed. You would not have known what was happening unless you had read the blurb - namely that the camera was tracing out the title. Again it was painfully slow. Be the first to see what you see as you see it plays around with the notion of how film fools the viewer (what's new!). Odds 3/1
Goshka Magcuga
Art that comments deliberately on the gallery space always seems a little 'tail wags the dog'. Odds 100/1
Cathy Wilkes
I give you all my money is a piece of copy-cat Tracy Emin. Overly biographical and there to deliberately raise eyebrows - but it doesn't, they just roll. Odds 1000/1


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