Turner Prize ’09 Awarded to Scotland-Based Painter Richard Wright


Glasgow-based painter Richard Wright, 49, poses in front of his artwork, after being announced as the winner of the Turner Prize 2009 at Tate Britain in London, Monday, Dec. 7, 2009. The winner of the 25,000 pound ($40,000) prize was chosen from among four finalists. The Turner Prize is awarded annually to a British artist under 50 and usually inspires fierce public debate. - AP Photo/Akira Suemori.

A Scotland-based painter known for destroying his large-scale
wall murals after they have been exhibited won Britain’s best-known art award,
the Turner Prize, on Monday. Richard Wright said he was surprised he beat three
other finalists to win the annual 25,000 pound ($40,000) prize
, which
was announced at London’s Tate Britain gallery. The award was presented by
British poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy. Wright is known for painting intricate,
large-scale patterns on walls or ceilings, as well as for his insistence that
his work be destroyed after the exhibitions end. He said he gave up painting on
canvas because those paintings were “rubbish” and didn’t represent who he was.