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Artist Tracey Emin's personal backing for Turner Prize in Margate revealed

Artist Tracey Emin gave her heartfelt backing to the bid for the Turner Prize to come to Margate, gallery owners have revealed.

The artist sent a personal letter to prize organisers as part of the Turner Contemporary's successful bid to host the world renowned prize.

Tracey Emin gave her backing to Turner prize coming to Margate
Tracey Emin gave her backing to Turner prize coming to Margate

The work of the four shortlisted artists is now on display at the gallery, with the winner due to be announced next month.

In her personal letter, which was sent with the bid back in 2017, she described her vision for it coming to the town.

“It was a stormy windy night in November. Paparazzi, journalists and news agency’s stood in the blustery winds as the waves crashed over the harbour wall. The Turner Prize was finally coming to Turner country," she wrote.

"Margate was a buzz of excitement. Every guest house and hotel was full. Pop-up restaurants and bars had appeared overnight. The old town shops proudly stayed open to show how cool their vintage wares were... The Turner Prize was back to its glory days."

Turner Contemporary won its bid to host the Prize
Turner Contemporary won its bid to host the Prize

She told organisers how she saw the Turner Contemporary gallery as the perfect venue, due to its size and scale, and location - Margate is where artist JMW Turner, who the gallery and the prize are named after, made his home.

She also wrote: "From a personal point of view I would be very proud to see Margate the town host the Turner Prize to show what a positive effect art can have on the whole community.

"I think it's an absolutely fantastic idea and even though I never won the Turner Prize, of course I would be more than happy to support this venture in every way I could."

Tai Shani's DC Semiramis installation for the Turner Prize Picture: Stephen White
Tai Shani's DC Semiramis installation for the Turner Prize Picture: Stephen White

She announced last year she is relocating her studio to Margate from London after submitting plans to Thanet council.

The Turner Prize winner will be announced at an awards ceremony on Tuesday, December 3.

The exhibition of the four shortlisted artists' work is on show until Sunday, January 12. To see Tracey's letter for yourself, click here.

To find out what’s going on in the county and for all the latest entertainment news click here.


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