Richard Wright wins Turner Prize 2009

Richard Wright wins Turner Prize 2009

With a Turner Prize now firmly under his belt, the future looks even brighter for Richard Wright. Words: Anna Millar

Glasgow-based artist Richard Wright has won the Turner Prize just months before making a major new work for the Dean Gallery in Edinburgh. Forty nine-year old Wright, a former Glasgow and Edinburgh School of Art student, received his prize from Poet Laureate Carol Ann Dufy as part of a ceremony at the Tate Britain earlier this month. The artist received £25,000 for his gold-leaf painting. Fellow artists Roger Hiorns, Enrico David and Lucy Skaer received consolation prizes of £5,000.

Born in London, Wright studied painting at Edinburgh College of Art from 1978 to 1982, and took an MFA at Glasgow School of Art between 1993 and 1995. This summer he joins fellow Turner winner Martin Creed to create new public artwork as part of the Edinburgh Art Festival. Wright will make a major new painting at the Dean Gallery, while Creed will create a public work in the centre of the city. All the works will be unveiled at the opening of the 2010 Edinburgh Art Festival next year.

Former culture minister Michael Russell said of the projects: ‘Edinburgh is the cultural capital of the world and a flourishing centre for the visual arts, with our rich architectural heritage and internationally admired galleries and artists.

‘The Art Festival commissions, supported by Expo funding, will not only see new works from two acclaimed Scottish contemporary artists animating historic spaces, but offer an unrivalled opportunity for emerging artists to make and display new work at next year’s internationally renowned Festivals.’

The Stairwells Project at the Dean Gallery will see Wright make a major new painting on the fabric of Thomas Hamilton’s Dean Orphan Hospital, now the Dean Gallery, part of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. Both of the stairwells will be made available to Wright for his work.

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