The artist and poet Heather Phillipson has won the 2016 Film London Jarman Award. She was presented the £10,000 prize by the singer and actor Toyah Wilcox – who played the character ‘Mad’ in Derek Jarman’s 1977 film, Jubilee – at an award ceremony at the Whitechapel Gallery, London.
Phillipson was chosen from a shortlist of six artists that also included Sophia Al Maria, Cécile B. Evans, Shona Illingworth, Mikhail Karikis and Rachel Maclean. All the artists will receive a film commission for Channel 4’s short-form arts strand Random Acts.
Phillipson, who was named a Next Generation Poet in 2014, is known for her film installations that combine sculptural structures with audio and video elements. These often require the viewer to walk or climb through them and have featured outsized sculptures such as the giant foot in her large-scale 2015 installation, Eat Here, at Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt
For her work, Final Days, Phillipson transformed disused shops in New York and Sheffield into an 18-screen video installation as a comment on the ‘disembodied experience’ of shopping. In 2016 she has presented solo shows at Whitechapel Gallery, Images Festival, Toronto and the 32nd Sao Paolo Biennale.
Commenting on the award, Adrian Wootton, chief executive of Film London and the British Film Commission, said: “The UK’s artist filmmakers are at the sector’s cutting edge, and this year’s shortlist offered our judges a riot of styles, stories, genres and subtexts to contemplate.
“We’re delighted to announce Heather Phillipson as this year’s winner of the Jarman Award for a body of work that is complex, anarchic and deftly views global events through a very personal lens. She collages images, sounds and words with the sense of pacing and rhythm as you might expect from someone who is also a poet and musician.”
Set up in 2008, previous winners of the Jarman Award include Luke Fowler (2008), Emily Wardill (2010), James Richards (2012), and John Smith (2013).
Also announced at the awards ceremony was the winner of this year’s Jules Wright Prize of £5,000 for female creative technician which went to the film editor Lucy Harris who has worked worked with artists such as Rosalind Nashashibi, Bridget Smith and Alia Syed.
1. Heather Phillipson, Eat Here, 2015-2016, installation view. Courtesy of the Artist, Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, and Norbert Migueletz
2. Heather Phillipson, Commiserations!, 2015. Courtesy of the artist
3. Heather Phillipson, 100% Other Fibres, 2016. Courtesy of the artist