Entertainment & Arts

Turner Prize 2015: Shortlist includes Toxteth housing estate

Granby Four Streets 2014 - Greenhouse view by Assemble Image copyright Assemble/Tate Britain
Image caption Artist collective Assemble transformed Granby Four Streets housing estate in Toxteth

A Liverpool housing estate transformed by an art collective and an opera inspired by the violence of cartoons have both been shortlisted for this year's Turner Prize.

The four nominees also include London artist Bonnie Camplin and German-born Nicole Wermers, nominated for her piece on "consumer culture", Infrastrucktur.

The winner of the £25,000 prize will be announced in December in Glasgow.

The 2015 exhibition is being staged at the city's Tramway arts venue.

The art prize, organised by Tate Galleries, has a reputation for controversy, with previous winners including Martin Creed's light going on and off and Grayson Perry's pots, which tackled subjects like death and child abuse.

This year's shortlist cites London-based collective, Assemble, who have helped to transform run down housing estates such as Toxteth's Granby Four Streets.

Residents fought plans for demolition by recruiting Assemble to help regenerate the spaces "from the ground up" to make the estate "a place people actually want to live in".

Image copyright PA/Tate Britain
Image caption Infrastruktur 2015 by artist Nicole Wermers features fur coats and designer chairs

The collective of around 16 people under 30 has also worked with community groups in the east end of Glasgow.

Tate said the group shares a studio in London and operates "like a Modernist collective from the 1930s".

"They have lunch every day around the table to discuss projects and they couldn't accept the nomination until all had accepted," revealed Tate Britain director Penelope Curtis at the launch in Glasgow.

Image copyright PA/Tate Britain
Image caption Janice Kerbel's operatic work Doug combined libretto and the violence of animal cartoons

A series of design classic dining chairs draped with fur coats are among the sculptures, collages and installations making up Wermers exhibit, called Infrastrucktur.

Together they "explore the appropriation of art and design within consumer culture".

Infrastruktur also includes a series of wall sculptures resembling tear-off flyers found in public spaces.

Camplin used insights from physics, philosophy and witchcraft to inspire her nominated work, The Military Industrial Complex.

Tate said it questions ideas of consensus and who is demonised as dangerous.

Camplin, who describes her practice as "the Invented Life", has also produced, directed and performed theatre and run experimental club nights in London's Soho.

'Futile violence'

Kerbel's operatic work Doug chronicled nine catastrophic events endured by a single individual.

It drew on the history of operatic librettos, the strategies of physical comedy, the language of narrative ballad and the futile violence of animated cartoons for inspiration.

The artist, who was born in Canada but works in London, created the performance work of nine songs for six voices to perform at Mitchell Library in Glasgow.

Kerbel's first major work in 1999, called Bank Job, was an ambitious and detailed plan for a robbery of exclusive private bank Coutts & Co.

Image copyright South London Gallery/Tate Britain
Image caption The Military Industrial Complex by artist Bonnie Camplin was shown at the South London Gallery

Bookmakers William Hill have made Assemble their narrow favourites to win the 31st Turner Prize, with Camplin the outsider.

Previous winners of the prestigious award - which is often derided by the British tabloid press - include Damien Hirst, Anish Kapoor, and Gilbert and George.

Artists eligible for this year's prize had to be working in Britain for an outstanding exhibition or other presentation of work in the 12 months preceding mid-April 2015.

The exhibition of the shortlisted artists's work is free and runs from October 2015 to January next year at Tramway, Glasgow. The winner is announced on 7 December.

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