Plymouth will bid to host the Turner Prize
THE World's most famous modern art award could be coming to Plymouth, The Herald can reveal.
A bid is being drawn up for the Turner Prize show and ceremony to be staged in the city in 2015.
If the application, led by Plymouth University's Peninsula Arts, were successful the city would enjoy a visitor bonanza and a blaze of media attention.
The Turner 2011 show attracted 150,000 visitors to the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, the second time the event has been held outside London in the prize's 28-year history.
Sarah Chapman, director of Peninsula Arts confirmed: "We are finalising a bid to bring the Turner Prize to Plymouth in 2015.
"We don't know who we will be up against. The competition (to host the prize) will be enormous so we have no idea if we will be successful – that would be a huge thing.
"But it is absolutely important that we have the passion and the self-belief in our city to try for it."
Peninsula Arts is the lead organisation in a partnership making the bid, including Plymouth Visual Arts Consortium. PVAC includes the council-owned City Museum and Art Gallery, Plymouth University, Plymouth College of Art and Plymouth Arts Centre.
Those organisations brought the British Art Show 7 exhibition to the city last year, attracting 75,000 visitors.
Plymouth-born "living sculpture" George Passmore was co-winner of the Turner in 1986. Former Plymouth College pupil Richard Deacon won in 1987. His sculpture, Moor, is in Victoria Park.
The bid envisages the four Turner Prize finalists showing their work in the Peninsula Arts Gallery in the Levinsky building.
Ms Chapman said the bid fitted Plymouth Culture Board's mission to expand creative activity in the city in the run-up to Mayflower 2020, the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrim Fathers' journey to America.
The board – comprising members from the private sector, city council, culture industry and education – is working on a bid for Plymouth to become UK City of Culture in 2017.
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