❚ THIS YEAR I ENJOYED a madcap chance meeting at the London Art Fair with Martin Creed, artist, musician and multimedia performer noted for his wayward dress sense as a living sculpture. Our paths first crossed in 2001 just before he won the annual Turner Prize for what some described as Creed’s “most notorious work” – Work No. 227: The lights going on and off – in an empty gallery. I had stumbled across his gentle but subversive wit in Paris in 1996 at an identical light display, and then back in London found his Work No. 140: A sheet of A4 paper torn up in the shop at the Institute of Contemporary Art. It cost me a tenner. A surefire investment.
Coincidentally, when Creed was nominated for the Turner Prize in June 2001, a similar piece titled A sheet of A4 paper crumpled into a ball was reported being sold for £2,000. My boss at The Sunday Times, who knew I was a collector, insisted I interview him for News Review and ask him whether my piece was also worth £2,000. Here below you can read the feature that resulted…
Creed subsequently won that Turner Prize, and the years since then have been fertile for the audacious artist. Creed’s website lists his latest work during lockdown as No. 3725 Live at home, though he has also been actively touring the world this year. Heaven knows how the current economic dramas must be corroding the value of my torn-up £10 masterpiece.
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➢ Visit Martin Creed’s website – with video discussion of the crumpled ball of paper