A Restless Art

‘If art isn’t about people and humanity, then what is it about?’

Hazel Tilley BBC Newsnight

The annual Turner Prize, established ‘to celebrate new developments in contemporary art’, is known for controversy. The debate usually turns on the question of whether the prize winner has exhibited art, rather than the more meaningful one of how good it is. This year has been different because the question being asked is whether the prize winners are even artists. And it is mostly being asked within the art world.

Assemble is a group of young architects, designers and activists who work with people to revive the places where they live. In just four years, they have created spaces for theatre and cinema, playgrounds and workshops.  Some of their work produces objects with obvious aesthetic intent, such as decorative fittings, but mostly it’s either very practical or social, intangible and also, in its…

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