Lubaina Himid is First Non-White Woman, and the Oldest Person, to Win Turner Prize

Lubaina Himid Naming the Money 2004 Installation view of Navigation Charts, Spike Island, Bristol 2017 Courtesy of the artist, Hollybush Gardens, and National Museums, Liverpool Photo: Stuart Whipps
Lubaina Himid Naming the Money 2004 Installation view of Navigation Charts, Spike Island, Bristol 2017 Courtesy of the artist, Hollybush Gardens, and National Museums, Liverpool Photo: Stuart Whipps
  • Lubaina Himid, 2017.  Courtesy of the artist and Hollybush Gardens Photo: Edmund Blok for Modern Art Oxford

    Lubaina Himid, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and Hollybush Gardens Photo: Edmund Blok for Modern Art Oxford

Britain's prestigious Turner Prize, awarded in contemporary art, has named its 2017 recipient--an artist who has worked for decades. The winner is Tanzania-born and Lancashire-based Lubaina Himid, age 63, and her challenging pieces, such as crockery painted with scenes of slavery from Britain’s colonial history, speak to the moment.

Says Alex Farquharson, director of Tate Britain and chair of the judging panel: “They speak to the present moment which has been one of division both in Britain and in America.”

The Guardian writes: "She is an artist who, arguably, has been overlooked and undervalued for most of her career." 

From the Tate: Himid makes paintings, prints, drawings and installations which celebrate Black creativity and the people of the African diaspora while challenging institutional invisibility. She references the slave industry and its legacies, and addresses the hidden and neglected cultural contribution made by real but forgotten people.

In Naming the Money 2014, 100 cut-out life size figures depict Black servants and labourers who Himid individualises, giving each of them a name and story to work against the sense of the powerless mass. She often takes her paintings off the gallery wall so that her images become objects that surround the viewer. Whether working on Guardian newspapers or directly onto porcelain tableware, Himid continually subjects painting to the material of everyday life in order to explore Black identity.

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