Turner Prize 2019: Derry film shares prestigious award

Turner Prize shortlist Image copyright Tate/Turner 2019
Image caption The Long Note explores the involvement of women in Northern Ireland's civil rights protests

A film celebrating the role of women in the 1968 Civil Rights Movement in Londonderry has shared the prestigious 2019 Turner Prize.

Helen Cammock's The Long Note uses archive footage and interviews some of women involved in the movement.

The four nominees shared the award after requesting the judges not choose any of them as a single winner.

The quartet of Helen, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Tai Shani and Oscar Murillo will share the £40,000 prize money.

The four said they wanted to make a "collective statement" at a time when there is "already so much that divides and isolates people and communities".

The judges agreed and revealed the move at Tuesday's ceremony in Margate, Kent.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Left-right: Tai Shani, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Helen Cammock and Oscar Murillo

The Turner Prize is Britain's most high-profile contemporary art award.

Helen Cammock's film was commissioned by, and put on display, at the Void Gallery in Derry to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the first civil rights march in the city.

The Turner award winner explained how she wanted to highlight the women's emotional intelligence, strength and courage.

Speaking on BBC Radio Foyle, she described it as a "struggle that often goes overlooked" and "a piece of history that some people in England may be unaware of".

Image copyright Helen Cammock
Image caption The film features various archive footage and a series of interviews Cammock made with women active in the movement

The art world had gathered at a Margate amusement park to find out who had won, but even for an award once known for its shock value, the four-way split was unexpected.

"The reception from the audience in the hall was kind of electric, it was quite incredible, we didn't know what to expect," Helen Cammock explained.

"We didn't know how people would react so that was also quite anxiety provoking, but actually it was an incredible moment and one I will never forget."

She said her film places the voices of Derry women at the centre of both the civil rights movement and the Troubles.

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Media captionTurner Prize: The moment all four nominees win prestigious award