French artist Laure Prouvost wins this year's Turner Prize
For her installation piece 'Wantee', which started with a cup of tea
It was announced by actress Saoirse Ronan at a ceremony in Londonderry last night that Prouvost beat humorous artist David Shrigley, painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye and performance artist Tino Sehgal to take the £25,000 prize. The artist accepted the award saying, "I'm not ready, I didn't expect it at all!"
"Four incredible artists here with me and the show. I thought 'It can't be me,' - I was sure it was not me. So thank you everybody," she said, as her baby daughter was brought on to the stage by Ronan. Judges witnessed Prouvost's piece, which was commissioned for this year's Schwitters in Britain exhibition at Tate Britain as a film, which played in a room styled like a tea party. The panel called it "outstanding for its complex and courageous combination of images and objects in a deeply atmospheric environment".
The 35-year-old French artist, who lives and works in London, thanked organisers for accepting her into the art scene, and for "adopting me, thank you for having a French one here. I've been here so many years and I feel adopted totally now by the UK, thank you."
It explored the lasting legacy of artist Kurt Schwitters through a fictional grandfather, who she had imagined to be a conceptual artist and one of Schwitters's close friends and named 'Wantee', in honour of Schwitters's companion who had a habit of asking "Want tea?"