The Turner Prize, awarded each year to a contemporary artist under 50, has been awarded to some pretty controversial pieces. Between Tracy Emin's 'My Bed,' which incorporated soiled underwear and condoms, and Chris Ofili's paintings made of elephant dung, the un-orthodox nominated pieces are often regarded as trash. Perhaps this year this rings true more than ever before, with the award going to Martin Boyce's 'Perforated and Porous (Northern Skies),' which is an installation incorporating a trash bin.
Boyce is known for bringing objects usually found in public, recreational spaces to atmospheric landscapes to witness how a mood can evolve from placing an object in space. Thus Boyce creates, through his appropriation of a trash can, modernist, psychological playgrounds. A judge explained: "Distinctive for the way that he employs his grammar of forms, Boyce's sparse, intelligent sculptures evolve each time they are exhibited, exploring new tensions and new contrasts."
Boyce, 44, walked away with £25,000. Upon his win he commented: "It's amazing, I'm shocked. I really didn't expect it." The other competitors Karla Black, Hilary Lloyd and George Shaw, called by critics the strongest competitors in years, each won £5,000.
When the winner was announced, a streaker in a tutu with the words 'Study This' written across his naked chest rushed the stage exclaiming "Thank you, thank you." The streaker was dragged out by security guards as Mario Testino, the award announcer commented: "Art is everywhere."