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How the Turner Prize-winner defined public relations in 2013

On Monday evening what could well be the most talked about award ceremony in the British arts scene took place. In many ways we were disappointed with the outcome, but nonetheless were intrigued by the victor’s offering, what with her clear focus on combining narratives with reality, blending various mediums together to achieve one overall impact. Which makes sense to us as PR and marketing types.
In and amongst the nominees for the Turner Prize 2013 was David Shrigley, a Glaswegian-based visual artist who premiered his entry here in Smoking Gun PR’s hometown of Manchester. His oft-scrawled, tongue in cheek messages and cartoons took over a good chunk of the Cornerhouse on Oxford Road earlier this year, and we enjoyed attending the grand opening (something of a coup for the venue, what with this chap’s international reputation).
Personal memories aside, though, we also have to commend the winner- French-born, British-living installation practitioner Laure Prouvost, because her work, which is dedicated to explored the lasting legacy of artist Kurt Schwitters, is rather impressive. It comprised a highly atmospheric film, which was shown in a room set up for a tea party. But, for the purposes of this particular blog post, that’s all but irrelevant.
What interested us more about the work was the theory that went into the finished product. Obviously there’s a major focus on narrative and storytelling, but in a video made by the organisation behind the Turner, Tate, the artist explained how she enjoyed the idea of having work exist in various states, from sketched portrait to video to sculpture to scripture, all of which feed off one another whilst being seen as autonomous, and read rather differently as a result of people experiencing them in very different contexts.
It’s a rather long-winded way of saying ‘the idea is for a multi-platform, multi-sensory experience’. And when we realised that our minds immediately jumped to daily life here on Quay Street. Because, albeit with a few obvious alterations to the schedule, that’s exactly what we do, week in, week out. This is also how all good public relations agencies should strive to work in this most modern of all eras. There must be an appreciation for a multitude of outlets, and the models that make them work. From traditional press to social media, each of these aspects must be taken fully into account and must coherently hang together, but by nature they all demand to be treated independently, and in turn will be seen from a variety angles by consumers, depending on the context of their experience.

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