Tate Britain Exhibition

Turner Prize 1986

Turner Prize

Gilbert & George won the Turner Prize 1986

Gilbert and George after receiving the Turner Prize, 1986

Gilbert and George after receiving the Turner Prize, 1986

Turner Prize 1986 lecture invitation

Turner Prize 1986 lecture invitation


  • Art & Language
  • Victor Burgin
  • Gilbert & George – winner
  • Derek Jarman
  • Stephen McKenna
  • Bill Woodrow


  • Nicholas Serota
  • Matthew Collings
  • Robin Klassnik

Turner Prize exhibition lets down shortlisted artists

The Turner Prize continued to establish itself as Britain’s foremost media art event, signalled by the fact that William Hill placed it on their books for the first time. The signing of a corporate sponsor for three years secured a future for the Prize; however there was increasing criticism of the shortlisting process and the exhibition. Many felt that if the main objective of the Prize was to popularise British art, then the shortlisted artists should be provided with a larger exhibition space to give the public a better sense of their work.


  • Jean Christophe Amman, Director, Kunsthalle, Basel
  • David Elliot, Director, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford
  • Michael Newman, art critic and teacher
  • Frederck Roos, representative of the Patrons of New Art
  • Alan Bowness, Director, Tate Gallery

Turner Prize 1986 in quotes

It seems bizarre. They mount this elaborate media operation to popularise British art, and then fail to do anything about showing art properly.
Mel Ramsden of Art & Language, 1986
The Turner Prize is clearly intended to arouse public interest in modern British culture and is a worthy idea – but until the Tate gives each artist a room to himself, it will remain a tawdry publicity stunt with next to no substance.
Andrew Graham-Dixon, the Sunday Times, August 1986

Tate Britain

London SW1P 4RG
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14–25 November 1986

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