This video is about Mark Wallinger’s State Britain.
From British daily The Independent, those questions to artist Mark Wallinger:
I presume you are familiar with the original. Too many people dismiss Brian Haw who have never taken the trouble to see what he has to say.
Context is everything in art. If the Tate had not approached me for a work for the Duveen Galleries it would not have happened at all – Brian’s protest would have remained in a container somewhere in Hendon, and your question would not have arisen. I can’t answer for the process that led to my nomination but I did give people eight months to take a proper look at what the Government is determined we should not see.
Are you friends with Brian Haw?
I am privileged to say I am. As I said in Liverpool, he is a remarkable man who sacrificed everything to make a stand against the folly and hubris of our government’s foreign policy. As a result of his rectitude the Government framed the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005, only to find it could not use a law retrospectively to get rid of him. This law cedes all power to the police to invent conditions on protest in a kilometre around Parliament Square.
How will you vote at the next general election?
Without much conviction, I am afraid. I voted Liberal Democrat for the first time at the last election as it was the only anti-war vote available. As a lifelong Labour supporter that made me a little queasy.
Do you think Gordon Brown is a good Prime Minister?
He sat in government over all the policies since 1997 so he was never going to be revolutionary. I think he has been too long in the wings. The lines are stale and empty. I have no idea what his vision for this country is but his wish for “British jobs for British people” doesn’t square with membership of the EU and 42 days’ detention without charge would be criminal. When we reach the point that [Conservative] Michael Howard can justifiably count himself more liberal than Labour’s last four Home Secretaries then the degree to which the Labour Party has moved to the right is clear. There is the whiff of corruption and ineptitude which will be hard to shift.
Turner prize for Wallinger caps a year of anti-war art: here.