Hull secures Turner Prize boost

Gary Noakes, 02.06.2015
Exhibition will be held in 2017 as part of UK City of Culture
Hull’s confirmation as the host of the Turner Prize in 2017 will enable its museums and galleries to be more ambitious, the city believes.

The prize will be presented at the Ferens Art Gallery, which is undergoing a £4m renovation, as part of Hull’s time as the UK City of Culture. Hull City Council has pledged £500,000 towards staging the exhibition, which will be held from October 2017 to January 2018.

“It’s immensely powerful in changing perceptions,” said Simon Green the director of cultural services at Hull Culture & Leisure.

The Ferens is being enlarged with a new gallery space, lobby area and an upgrading of the environment control system, which Green said was critical.

“The gallery refit is the big thing,” Green says. “That allows us to bring in big-ticket loans.”

Hull hopes that staging the Turner Prize will help engage and inspire local artists and new audiences, and will create a legacy beyond 2017.

Hull’s museums quarter in the Old Town has Wilberforce House, the Hull and East Riding Museum, Streetlife and the Arctic Corsair trawler.

“The museums service attracts 587,000 visitors in a city of 250,000, and my ambition is to go way over 600,000,” Green said. Hull itself expects to double its one million annual visitors in 2017.

A legacy project for 2018 will be to highlight the city’s maritime history more. The focus will be the history of Queen’s Gardens, once the largest dock in the UK, and Prince’s Quay, above which a shopping centre was built on stilts.

The Turner Prize was first shown outside London at Tate Liverpool in 2007. Since 2011, it has been shown in alternate years between Tate Britain and other venues in the UK. It was at Baltic, Gateshead, in 2011, Derry in 2013 and, will be at the Tramway in Glasgow this year.


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Tim Schadla-Hall
MA Member
Reader in Public Archaeology, University College London
03.06.2015, 13:25
well done Hull- a city that still runs it museums with money and pride!