Liverpool, United Kingdom. 1949
Turner Prize winning sculptor Tony Cragg (1949) emerged in the late 1970s with a bold practice that questioned and tested the limits of a wide variety of traditional sculptural materials, including bronze, steel, glass, wood, and stone. “I’m an absolute materialist, and for me material is exciting and ultimately sublime,” he has said. Eschewing factory fabrication of his works, Cragg has been known to merge contemporary industrial materials with the suggestion of the functional forms of mundane objects and ancient vessels (like jars, bottles, and test tubes) resulting in sublime, sinuous, and twisting forms. “When I’m involved in making sculpture, I’m looking for a system of belief or ethics in the material,” he says. “I want that material to have a dynamic, to push and move and grow”.
Cragg has participated in exhibitions at institutions such as The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Centre Pompidou, Tate Modern, MoMA PS1, Serpentine Galleries, Castello di Rivoli, Rockbund Art Museum, K20 Grabbeplatz, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA), Tate Britain, Mori Art Museum, Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Whitechapel Gallery, Museo Reina Sofia, Museo Tamayo. He has been awarded many prizes, including the Praemium Imperiale for Sculpture in Tokyo in 2007; in 1988 Cragg received the Turner Prize at the Tate Gallery in London and represented Britain at the 42nd Venice Biennale.