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Tracey Emin

Tracey Emin

Overview
Tracey Karima Emin RA (born 3 July 1963 in Croydon
Croydon
Croydon is a town in South London, England, located within the London Borough of Croydon to which it gives its name. It is situated south of Charing Cross...

) is a British
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 artist
Artist
An artist is a person engaged in one or more of any of a broad spectrum of activities related to creating art, practicing the arts and/or demonstrating an art. The common usage in both everyday speech and academic discourse is a practitioner in the visual arts only...

 of English
English people
The English are a nation and ethnic group native to England, who speak English. The English identity is of early mediaeval origin, when they were known in Old English as the Anglecynn. England is now a country of the United Kingdom, and the majority of English people in England are British Citizens...

 and Turkish Cypriot origin. She is part of the group known as Britartists or YBAs (Young British Artists
Young British Artists
Young British Artists or YBAs is the name given to a loose group of visual artists who first began to exhibit together in London, in 1988...

).

In 1997, her work Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963–1995, a tent appliquéd with names, was shown at Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi is the co-founder with his brother Maurice of the global advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi, and led that business - the world's largest advertising agency in the 1980s - until they were forced out in 1995. In the same year the Saatchi brothers formed a new agency called M&C...

's Sensation exhibition held at the Royal Academy in London. The same year, she gained considerable media exposure when she appeared drunk and swearing on a live Channel 4 TV discussion.

In 1999, she was a Turner Prize
Turner Prize
The Turner Prize, named after the painter J. M. W. Turner, is an annual prize presented to a British visual artist under the age of 50. Awarding the prize is organised by the Tate gallery and staged at Tate Britain. Since its beginnings in 1984 it has become the United Kingdom's most publicised...

 nominee and exhibited My Bed
My Bed
My Bed is a work by the British artist Tracey Emin. First created in 1998, it was exhibited at the Tate Gallery in 1999 as one of the shortlisted works for the Turner Prize. It consisted of her bed with bedroom objects in an abject state, and gained much media attention...

— an installation, consisting of her own unmade dirty bed with used condom
Condom
A condom is a barrier device most commonly used during sexual intercourse to reduce the probability of pregnancy and spreading sexually transmitted diseases . It is put on a man's erect penis and physically blocks ejaculated semen from entering the body of a sexual partner...

s and blood-stained underwear.
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Quotations

Your paintings are stuck, you are stuck! Stuck! Stuck! Stuck!

Milner, Frank (ed), The Stuckists Punk Victorian, [National Museums Liverpool 2004], p. 134
Encyclopedia
Tracey Karima Emin RA (born 3 July 1963 in Croydon
Croydon
Croydon is a town in South London, England, located within the London Borough of Croydon to which it gives its name. It is situated south of Charing Cross...

) is a British
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 artist
Artist
An artist is a person engaged in one or more of any of a broad spectrum of activities related to creating art, practicing the arts and/or demonstrating an art. The common usage in both everyday speech and academic discourse is a practitioner in the visual arts only...

 of English
English people
The English are a nation and ethnic group native to England, who speak English. The English identity is of early mediaeval origin, when they were known in Old English as the Anglecynn. England is now a country of the United Kingdom, and the majority of English people in England are British Citizens...

 and Turkish Cypriot origin. She is part of the group known as Britartists or YBAs (Young British Artists
Young British Artists
Young British Artists or YBAs is the name given to a loose group of visual artists who first began to exhibit together in London, in 1988...

).

In 1997, her work Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963–1995, a tent appliquéd with names, was shown at Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi is the co-founder with his brother Maurice of the global advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi, and led that business - the world's largest advertising agency in the 1980s - until they were forced out in 1995. In the same year the Saatchi brothers formed a new agency called M&C...

's Sensation exhibition held at the Royal Academy in London. The same year, she gained considerable media exposure when she appeared drunk and swearing on a live Channel 4 TV discussion.

In 1999, she was a Turner Prize
Turner Prize
The Turner Prize, named after the painter J. M. W. Turner, is an annual prize presented to a British visual artist under the age of 50. Awarding the prize is organised by the Tate gallery and staged at Tate Britain. Since its beginnings in 1984 it has become the United Kingdom's most publicised...

 nominee and exhibited My Bed
My Bed
My Bed is a work by the British artist Tracey Emin. First created in 1998, it was exhibited at the Tate Gallery in 1999 as one of the shortlisted works for the Turner Prize. It consisted of her bed with bedroom objects in an abject state, and gained much media attention...

— an installation, consisting of her own unmade dirty bed with used condom
Condom
A condom is a barrier device most commonly used during sexual intercourse to reduce the probability of pregnancy and spreading sexually transmitted diseases . It is put on a man's erect penis and physically blocks ejaculated semen from entering the body of a sexual partner...

s and blood-stained underwear. There has been an ongoing dispute with former boyfriend, artist Billy Childish
Billy Childish
Billy Childish is an English artist, painter, author, poet, photographer, film maker, singer and guitarist...

, particularly over the Stuckism
Stuckism
Stuckism is an international art movement founded in 1999 by Billy Childish and Charles Thomson to promote figurative painting in opposition to conceptual art...

 movement, founded in 1999 and named after an insult by her.

In 2004, her tent artwork was destroyed in the Momart warehouse fire. In March 2007, Emin was chosen to join the Royal Academy of Arts
Royal Academy
The Royal Academy of Arts is an art institution based in Burlington House on Piccadilly, London. The Royal Academy of Arts has a unique position in being an independent, privately funded institution led by eminent artists and architects whose purpose is to promote the creation, enjoyment and...

 in London as a Royal Academician. She represented Britain at the 2007 Venice Biennale
Venice Biennale
The Venice Biennale is a major contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years in Venice, Italy. The Venice Film Festival is part of it. So too is the Venice Biennale of Architecture, which is held in even years...

. Her first major retrospective 20 Years was held in Edinburgh 2008, and toured Europe until 2009.

Tracey opened the Turner Contemporary art gallery in Margate
Margate
-Demography:As of the 2001 UK census, Margate had a population of 40,386.The ethnicity of the town was 97.1% white, 1.0% mixed race, 0.5% black, 0.8% Asian, 0.6% Chinese or other ethnicity....

 with Jools Holland
Jools Holland
Julian Miles "Jools" Holland OBE, DL is an English pianist, bandleader, singer, composer, and television presenter. He was a founder of the band Squeeze and his work has involved him with many artists including Sting, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, The Who, David Gilmour and Bono.Holland is a...

 in April 2011. She has been a major supporter of the project from its inception and it has been suggested she will exhibit there in the future. In May 2011, Emin's largest major solo exhibition in a public space was held at Hayward Gallery
Hayward Gallery
The Hayward Gallery is an art gallery within the Southbank Centre, part of an area of major arts venues on the South Bank of the River Thames, in central London, England. It is sited adjacent to the other Southbank Centre buildings and also the Royal National Theatre and British Film Institute...

, London titled Love Is What You Want.

Emin is a panelist and speaker: she has lectured at the Victoria and Albert Museum
Victoria and Albert Museum
The Victoria and Albert Museum , set in the Brompton district of The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, London, England, is the world's largest museum of decorative arts and design, housing a permanent collection of over 4.5 million objects...

 in London, the
European Graduate School
European Graduate School
The European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland is a privately funded graduate school founded by the non-profit European Foundation of Interdisciplinary Studies. Its German name is Europäische Universität für Interdisziplinäre Studien...

 in Saas-Fee
Saas-Fee
Saas-Fee is the main village in the Saastal, or the Saas Valley, and is a municipality in the district of Visp in the canton of Valais in Switzerland...

, Switzerland, the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney (2010), the Royal Academy of Arts (2008), and the Tate Britain
Tate Britain
Tate Britain is an art gallery situated on Millbank in London, and part of the Tate gallery network in Britain, with Tate Modern, Tate Liverpool and Tate St Ives. It is the oldest gallery in the network, opening in 1897. It houses a substantial collection of the works of J. M. W. Turner.-History:It...

 in London (2005) about the links between creativity and autobiography, and the role of subjectivity and personal histories in constructing art. Emin's art takes many different forms of expression including needlework and sculpture, drawing, video and installation, photography and painting.

Early life



Tracey Emin was born in Croydon
Croydon
Croydon is a town in South London, England, located within the London Borough of Croydon to which it gives its name. It is situated south of Charing Cross...

 and brought up in Margate
Margate
-Demography:As of the 2001 UK census, Margate had a population of 40,386.The ethnicity of the town was 97.1% white, 1.0% mixed race, 0.5% black, 0.8% Asian, 0.6% Chinese or other ethnicity....

. She has a twin brother. Emin's father, a Turkish Cypriot, was married to a woman other than her mother and divided his time between his two families. He owned the Hotel International in Margate, and, when the business failed, Emin's family suffered a severe decline in their standard of living, circumstances which have featured in a number of works. Around the age of 13 she was raped. In a "loosely autobiographical" film to be made of this event she only asked, in true documentary fashion, that "The extras will all come from Margate and I'll hire a church hall there to hold auditions. I'll ask each of the girls: 'What is it you really hate about your mum?'"
At 18 she was pregnant with twins but had an abortion because she was scared of what her parents would think.

She studied fashion at Medway College of Design
University College for the Creative Arts at Canterbury, Epsom, Farnham, Maidstone and Rochester
The University for the Creative Arts is a specialist art and design university in the south of England.-History:The university was formed in 2005 as University College for the Creative Arts at Canterbury, Epsom, Farnham, Maidstone and Rochester, through the merger of the Kent Institute of Art &...

 (1980–1982), where she met expelled student Billy Childish
Billy Childish
Billy Childish is an English artist, painter, author, poet, photographer, film maker, singer and guitarist...

 and was associated with The Medway Poets
The Medway Poets
The Medway Poets were founded in Medway, North Kent in 1979. They were an English punk based poetry performance group and later formed the core of the first Stuckists Art Group. The members were Miriam Carney, Billy Childish, Rob Earl, Bill Lewis, Sexton Ming and Charles Thomson...

. Emin and Childish were a couple until 1987 during which time she was the administrator for his small press Hangman Books
Hangman Books
Hangman Books is a British independent small press founded in 1981 by Billy Childish, who remains its owner and editor. It publishes poetry and some fiction...

 which specialized in publishing Childish's confessional poetry. In 1984 she studied printing at Maidstone Art College
Kent Institute of Art & Design
The Kent Institute of Art & Design was an art school based across three campuses in the county of Kent, in the United Kingdom. It was formed by the amalgamation of three independent colleges: Canterbury College of Art, Maidstone College of Art and Rochester College of Art...

, which she has described as one of the best experiences of her life. In 1995, she was interviewed in the Minky Manky show catalogue by Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman is the founder of Carl Freedman Gallery . He previously worked as a writer and a curator, initially with Damien Hirst, to help pioneer the Young British Artists phenomenon.-Life and work:...

, who asked her, "Which person do you think has had the greatest influence on your life?" She replied,

In 1987, Emin moved to London to study at the Royal College of Art
Royal College of Art
The Royal College of Art is an art school located in London, United Kingdom. It is the world’s only wholly postgraduate university of art and design, offering the degrees of Master of Arts , Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy...

, where she obtained an MA
Master's degree
A master's is an academic degree granted to individuals who have undergone study demonstrating a mastery or high-order overview of a specific field of study or area of professional practice...

 in painting, though she has described this time as a very negative experience. Her influences included Edvard Munch
Edvard Munch
Edvard Munch was a Norwegian Symbolist painter, printmaker and an important forerunner of expressionist art. His best-known composition, The Scream, is part of a series The Frieze of Life, in which Munch explored the themes of love, fear, death, melancholia, and anxiety.- Childhood :Edvard Munch...

 and Egon Schiele
Egon Schiele
Egon Schiele was an Austrian painter. A protégé of Gustav Klimt, Schiele was a major figurative painter of the early 20th century. His work is noted for its intensity, and the many self-portraits the artist produced...

; later she destroyed all her paintings from this early period, and for a time studied philosophy
Philosophy
Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational...

 at Birkbeck, University of London
Birkbeck, University of London
Birkbeck, University of London is a public research university located in London, United Kingdom and a constituent college of the federal University of London. It offers many Master's and Bachelor's degree programmes that can be studied either part-time or full-time, though nearly all teaching is...

. One of the paintings that survives from her time at Royal College of Art is Friendship which is in the Royal College of Art Collection.

Britartist


In 1993, Emin opened a shop with fellow artist Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas is an English artist. She is part of the generation of Young British Artists who emerged during the 1990s...

, called simply The Shop at 103 Bethnal Green Road in Bethnal Green
Bethnal Green
Bethnal Green is a district of the East End of London, England and part of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, with the far northern parts falling within the London Borough of Hackney. Located northeast of Charing Cross, it was historically an agrarian hamlet in the ancient parish of Stepney,...

. This sold works by the two of them, including T-shirt
T-shirt
A T-shirt is a style of shirt. A T-shirt is buttonless and collarless, with short sleeves and frequently a round neck line....

s and ash trays with Damien Hirst
Damien Hirst
Damien Steven Hirst is an English artist, entrepreneur and art collector. He is the most prominent member of the group known as the Young British Artists , who dominated the art scene in Britain during the 1990s. He is internationally renowned, and is reportedly Britain's richest living artist,...

's picture stuck to the bottom. Lucas paid Emin a wage to mind the shop and Emin also made extra money by writing letters to people asking them to invest £20 in her as an artist, one being Jay Jopling
Jay Jopling
Jeremy "Jay" Jopling is an English art dealer and gallery owner. He is closely associated with the YBA artists and his gallery White Cube represents the commercial interests of YBAs Jake & Dinos Chapman, Tracey Emin, Marcus Harvey, Damien Hirst, Gary Hume, Marc Quinn, and Sam Taylor-Wood, whom he...

, who became her dealer. During this period Emin was also working with the gallerist Joshua Compston
Joshua Compston
Joshua Richard Compston was a London gallerist whose space, Factual Nonsense, was closely associated with the emergence of the Young British Artists . Compston graduated from the Courtauld Institute of Art in 1992...

.

In 1994, she had her first solo show at the White Cube
White Cube
White Cube is a contemporary art gallery designed by MRJ Rundell & Associates in Hoxton Square in the East End of London Mason's Yard, in central London and White Cube Bermondsey in South East London...

 gallery, a leading contemporary art gallery in London. It was called My Major Retrospective, and was what is now seen as typically autobiographical in her work, consisting of personal photographs, and photos of her (destroyed) early paintings, as well as items which most artists would not consider showing in public, such as a packet of cigarette
Cigarette
A cigarette is a small roll of finely cut tobacco leaves wrapped in a cylinder of thin paper for smoking. The cigarette is ignited at one end and allowed to smoulder; its smoke is inhaled from the other end, which is held in or to the mouth and in some cases a cigarette holder may be used as well...

s her uncle was holding when he was decapitated in a car crash. This willingness to show details of what would generally be thought of as her private life has become one of Emin's trademarks.

In the mid-1990s she had a relationship with Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman is the founder of Carl Freedman Gallery . He previously worked as a writer and a curator, initially with Damien Hirst, to help pioneer the Young British Artists phenomenon.-Life and work:...

, who had been an early friend of, and collaborator with, Damien Hirst
Damien Hirst
Damien Steven Hirst is an English artist, entrepreneur and art collector. He is the most prominent member of the group known as the Young British Artists , who dominated the art scene in Britain during the 1990s. He is internationally renowned, and is reportedly Britain's richest living artist,...

 and who had co-curated seminal Britart shows, such as Modern Medicine and Gambler. In 1994, they toured the US together, driving in a Cadillac
Cadillac
Cadillac is an American luxury vehicle marque owned by General Motors . Cadillac vehicles are sold in over 50 countries and territories, but mostly in North America. Cadillac is currently the second oldest American automobile manufacturer behind fellow GM marque Buick and is among the oldest...

 from San Francisco to New York, and making stops en route where she gave readings from her autobiographical book Exploration of the Soul to finance the trip. En route they "belly surfed" in San Diego and watched bears in Big Sur
Big Sur
Big Sur is a sparsely populated region of the Central Coast of California where the Santa Lucia Mountains rise abruptly from the Pacific Ocean. The name "Big Sur" is derived from the original Spanish-language "el sur grande", meaning "the big south", or from "el país grande del sur", "the big...

.

The couple also spent time by the sea in Whitstable
Whitstable
Whitstable is a seaside town in Northeast Kent, Southeast England. It is approximately north of the city of Canterbury and approximately west of the seaside town of Herne Bay. It is part of the City of Canterbury district and has a population of about 30,000.Whitstable is famous for its oysters,...

 together, using the beach hut, which she uprooted and turned into art in 1999 with the title The Last Thing I Said to You is Don't Leave Me Here, and which was destroyed in the 2004 Momart warehouse fire.


In 1995, Freedman curated the show Minky Manky at the South London Gallery
South London Gallery
South London Gallery, founded 1891, often known by the acronym SLG, is a public-funded gallery of contemporary art in Camberwell, London - exhibiting artists included Alfredo Jaar, Ryan Gander and Chris Burden...

. Emin has said,

The result was Emin's famous "tent" Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963–1995, which was first exhibited in the show. It was a blue tent
Tent
A tent is a shelter consisting of sheets of fabric or other material draped over or attached to a frame of poles or attached to a supporting rope. While smaller tents may be free-standing or attached to the ground, large tents are usually anchored using guy ropes tied to stakes or tent pegs...

, appliquéd with the names of everyone she has slept with. These included sexual partners, plus relatives she slept with as a child, her twin brother, and her two aborted
Abortion
Abortion is defined as the termination of pregnancy by the removal or expulsion from the uterus of a fetus or embryo prior to viability. An abortion can occur spontaneously, in which case it is usually called a miscarriage, or it can be purposely induced...

 children. Although often talked about as a shameless exhibition of her sexual conquests, it was rather a piece about intimacy in a more general sense, although the title invites misinterpretation. The needlework which is integral to this work was used by Emin in a number of her other pieces. This piece was later bought by Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi is the co-founder with his brother Maurice of the global advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi, and led that business - the world's largest advertising agency in the 1980s - until they were forced out in 1995. In the same year the Saatchi brothers formed a new agency called M&C...

 and included in the successful 1997 Sensation exhibition
Sensation exhibition
Sensation was an exhibition of the collection of contemporary art owned by Charles Saatchi, including many works by Young British Artists, which first took place 18 September – 28 December 1997 at the Royal Academy of Art in London and later toured to Berlin and New York...

 at the Royal Academy of London; it then toured to Berlin and New York. It, too, was destroyed by the fire in Saatchi's east London warehouse, in 2004.

Freedman's interview with her appears in the catalogue. Other featured artists were Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas is an English artist. She is part of the generation of Young British Artists who emerged during the 1990s...

, Gary Hume
Gary Hume
Gary Stewart Hume is an English artist. His work is strongly identified with the YBA artists who came to prominence in the early-1990s. In 1996, Hume was nominated for the Turner Prize, but lost out to Douglas Gordon. Hume was elected a Royal Academician in 2001.-Life and work:Hume was born in...

, Damien Hirst
Damien Hirst
Damien Steven Hirst is an English artist, entrepreneur and art collector. He is the most prominent member of the group known as the Young British Artists , who dominated the art scene in Britain during the 1990s. He is internationally renowned, and is reportedly Britain's richest living artist,...

, Mat Collishaw
Mat Collishaw
Matthew "Mat" Collishaw is an artist based in London, and one of the Young British Artists.-Career:Collishaw attended Goldsmiths, University of London , alongside Damien Hirst and other YBA artists....

, Gilbert & George, Critical Décor and Steven Pippin
Steven Pippin
Steven Pippin is an English artist. Pippin works with converted or improvised photographic equipment and kinetic sculptures....

. Emin now describes Freedman as "one of my best friends".

Emin lives in Spitalfields
Spitalfields
Spitalfields is a former parish in the borough of Tower Hamlets, in the East End of London, near to Liverpool Street station and Brick Lane. The area straddles Commercial Street and is home to many markets, including the historic Old Spitalfields Market, founded in the 17th century, Sunday...

, East London on Fournier Street
Fournier Street
Fournier Street, formerly Church Street, is a street of 18th century houses in Spitalfields, in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. It runs between Commercial Street and Brick Lane....

 in a Georgian Huguenot
Huguenot
The Huguenots were members of the Protestant Reformed Church of France during the 16th and 17th centuries. Since the 17th century, people who formerly would have been called Huguenots have instead simply been called French Protestants, a title suggested by their German co-religionists, the...

 silk weavers house which dates from 1726.

Fame


Although these early events caused Emin to be well known in art circles, she was largely unknown by the public until she appeared on a Channel 4
Channel 4
Channel 4 is a British public-service television broadcaster which began working on 2 November 1982. Although largely commercially self-funded, it is ultimately publicly owned; originally a subsidiary of the Independent Broadcasting Authority , the station is now owned and operated by the Channel...

 television
Television
Television is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images that can be monochrome or colored, with accompanying sound...

 programme in 1997. It was an ostensibly serious debate show about that year's Turner Prize, and Emin appeared completely drunk (she later said this was caused by painkillers she was taking for a broken finger), swearing, insulting the other panel members and saying that she wanted to go home to her mother, before actually walking out. From the interview: "Are they really real people in England watching this programme now, they really watching, really watching it?... They're 25 minutes behind us, think about that... I'm leaving now, I wanna be with my friends, I wanna be with my mum. I'm gonna phone her, and she's going to be embarrassed about this conversation, this is live and I don't care. I don't give a fuck about it."


Two years later, in 1999, Emin was shortlisted for the Turner Prize
Turner Prize
The Turner Prize, named after the painter J. M. W. Turner, is an annual prize presented to a British visual artist under the age of 50. Awarding the prize is organised by the Tate gallery and staged at Tate Britain. Since its beginnings in 1984 it has become the United Kingdom's most publicised...

 herself and exhibited My Bed
My Bed
My Bed is a work by the British artist Tracey Emin. First created in 1998, it was exhibited at the Tate Gallery in 1999 as one of the shortlisted works for the Turner Prize. It consisted of her bed with bedroom objects in an abject state, and gained much media attention...

at the Tate Gallery
Tate Gallery
The Tate is an institution that houses the United Kingdom's national collection of British Art, and International Modern and Contemporary Art...

. There was considerable media furore about this, particularly as the sheets of the bed were stained yellow, and the floor surrounding it had items from her room such as condoms, empty cigarette packets, a pair of knickers with menstrual stains and other detritus including a pair of slippers. The bed was presented as it had been when she had stayed in it for several days feeling suicidal because of relationship difficulties.

One lady came to the exhibition with cleaning materials and had to be stopped from tidying it up.

Two performance artists, Yuan Chai and Jian Jun Xi
Yuan Chai and Jian Jun Xi
Yuan Chai and Jian Jun Xi are two Chinese performance artists, based in Britain, who work together and specialise in art intervention. They have enacted events at the Venice Biennale and the Turner Prize, where in 1999 they jumped onto Tracey Emin's My Bed.-Life:At the time of the My Bed incident ...

, jumped onto the bed with bare torsos in order to "improve" the work, which they thought had not gone far enough.

In July 1999, at the height of Emin's Turner Prize
Turner Prize
The Turner Prize, named after the painter J. M. W. Turner, is an annual prize presented to a British visual artist under the age of 50. Awarding the prize is organised by the Tate gallery and staged at Tate Britain. Since its beginnings in 1984 it has become the United Kingdom's most publicised...

 fame, the artist created a number of monoprint drawings inspired by the public and private life of Princess Diana for a themed exhibition called Temple of Diana held at The Blue Gallery, London. Works such as They Wanted You To Be Destroyed (1999) related to Princess Diana's bulimia eating disorder, while other monoprints included affectionate texts such as Love Was On Your Side and a description of Princess Diana's dress with puffy sleeves. Other drawings highlighted The things you did to help other people written next to a drawing by Emin of Diana, Princess of Wales
Diana, Princess of Wales
Diana, Princess of Wales was the first wife of Charles, Prince of Wales, whom she married on 29 July 1981, and an international charity and fundraising figure, as well as a preeminent celebrity of the late 20th century...

 in protective clothing walking through a minefield in Angola. Another work was a delicate sketch of a rose drawn next to the phrase, It makes perfect sence to know they killed you (with Emin's trademark spelling mistakes) referring to the conspiracy theories surrounding Princess Diana's death. Emin herself described the drawings saying they "could be considered quite scrappy, fresh, kind of naive looking drawings" and "It's pretty difficult for me to do drawings not about me and about someone else. But I have did have a lot of ideas. They're quite sentimental I think and there's nothing cynical about it whatsoever."

International popstars Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

 and George Michael
George Michael
George Michael is a British musician, singer, songwriter and record producer who rose to fame in the 1980s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley...

 are both collectors of Emin's work, with Michael, and his partner Kenny Goss, holding the A Tribute To Tracey Emin exhibition in September 2007 at their Dallas based museum, the Goss-Michael Foundation (formerly Goss Gallery). This was the inaugural exhibition for the gallery which displayed a variety of Emin works from a large blanket, video installations, prints, paintings and a number of neon works including a special neon piece George Loves Kenny (2007) which was the centrepiece of the exhibition, developed by Emin after she wrote an article for The Independent
The Independent
The Independent is a British national morning newspaper published in London by Independent Print Limited, owned by Alexander Lebedev since 2010. It is nicknamed the Indy, while the Sunday edition, The Independent on Sunday, is the Sindy. Launched in 1986, it is one of the youngest UK national daily...

 newspaper in February 2007 with the same title. Michael and Goss own 25 works by Emin.

Other celebrities and musicians who support Emin's art include models Jerry Hall
Jerry Hall
Jerry Faye Hall is an American model and actress, also known for her long-term relationship with Mick Jagger, with whom she had four children.-Early life:...

 and Naomi Campbell
Naomi Campbell
Naomi Campbell is a British model. Scouted at the age of 15, she established herself among the top three most recognisable and in-demand models of the late 1980s and early 1990s, and she was one of six models of her generation declared "supermodels" by the fashion world...

, film star Orlando Bloom
Orlando Bloom
Orlando Jonathan Blanchard Bloom is an English actor. He had his break-through roles in 2001 as the elf-prince Legolas in The Lord of the Rings and starring in 2003 as blacksmith Will Turner in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series, and subsequently established himself as a lead in Hollywood...

 who bought a number of Emin's works at charity auctions and pop band Temposhark
Temposhark
Temposhark is an English electronic rock band, formed in London and Brighton by singer-songwriter Robert Diament. Temposhark are best known for their songs Bye Bye Baby, Joy, It's Better To Have Loved and Not That Big; a duet with singer Imogen Heap which appears on their 2008 debut album The...

, whose lead singer collects Emin's art, named their debut album The Invisible Line
The Invisible Line
The Invisible Line is the debut album by UK band, Temposhark.Temposhark's debut album was produced and recorded in London by rising producer Sean McGhee with two tracks produced by Frou Frou member Guy Sigsworth, who contributes It's Better To Have Loved and Winter's Coming. The recording process...

, inspired by passages from Emin's book Exploration of The Soul. Rock legend Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones is a well documented friend of Emin and whose own paintings are inspired by Emin's work. In 2004, Emin presented Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

 with the UK Music Hall Of Fame award. Emin was invited to Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

's country estate Ashcombe and has been described by the singer, "Tracey is intelligent and wounded and not afraid to expose herself," she says. "She is provocative but she has something to say. I can relate to that." David Bowie
David Bowie
David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

, a childhood inspiration of Emin's, also became friends with the artist, Bowie has described Emin as, William Blake as a woman, written by Mike Leigh

Like the George Michael
George Michael
George Michael is a British musician, singer, songwriter and record producer who rose to fame in the 1980s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley...

 and Kenny Goss neon, Emin also created a unique neon work for her supermodel friend Kate Moss
Kate Moss
Kate Moss is an English model. Moss is known for her waifish figure and popularising the heroin chic look in the 1990s. She is also known for her controversial private life, high profile relationships, party lifestyle, and drug use. Moss changed the look of modelling and started a global debate on...

 called Moss Kin. In 2004, it was reported that this unique piece had been discovered dumped in a skip in east London. The piece, consisting of neon tubing spelling the words Moss Kin, had been mistakenly thrown out of a basement, owned by the craftsman who made the glass. The artwork was never collected by Moss and had therefore been stored for three years in the basement of a specialist artist used by Emin in the Spitalfields area. It was accidentally dumped when the craftsman moved. The term used in the work Kin is a recurring theme of Emin's to describe those dear to her, her loved ones. Other examples can be seen in a monoprint called MatKin dedicated to her then boyfriend artist Mat Collishaw
Mat Collishaw
Matthew "Mat" Collishaw is an artist based in London, and one of the Young British Artists.-Career:Collishaw attended Goldsmiths, University of London , alongside Damien Hirst and other YBA artists....

 and released as an aquatint limited edition in 1997. Emin has also created a nude drawing of Kate Moss
Kate Moss
Kate Moss is an English model. Moss is known for her waifish figure and popularising the heroin chic look in the 1990s. She is also known for her controversial private life, high profile relationships, party lifestyle, and drug use. Moss changed the look of modelling and started a global debate on...

 known as Kate (2000), signed and dated as 1 February 2000 in pencil by the artist. In 2006, the same image was released as a limited edition etching, but renamed as Kate Moss 2000 (2006).

Monoprints


Emin's monoprints are a well documented part of her creative output. These unique drawings represent a diaristic aspect and frequently depict events from the past for example, Poor Love (1999), From The Week Of Hell '94 (1995) and Ripped Up (1995), which relate to a traumatic experience after an abortion or other personal events as seen in Fuck You Eddy (1995) and Sad Shower in New York (1995) which are both part of the Tate's collection of Emin's art.

Often they incorporate text as well as image, although some bear only text and others only image. The text appears as the artist's stream of consciousness voice. Some critics have compared Emin's text-only monoprints to ransom notes. The rapid, one-off technique involved in making monoprints is perfectly suited to (apparently) immediate expression, as is Emin's scratchy and informal drawing style. Emin frequently misspells words, deliberately or due to the speed at which she did each drawing. In a 2002 interview with Lynn Barber
Lynn Barber
Lynn Barber is a British journalist, who writes for The Sunday Times.-Early life:Barber attended Lady Eleanor Holles School...

, Emin said,

Emin created a key series of monoprints in 1997 with the text Something's Wrong or There Must Be Something Terebley Wrong With Me [sic] written with spelling mistakes intact in large capital letters alongside "forlorn figures surrounded by space, their outlines fragile on the page. Some are complete bodies, others only female torsos, legs splayed and with odd, spidery flows gushing from their vaginas. They are all accompanied by the legend There's Something Wrong."

Other key monoprints include a series from 1994 and 1995 known as the Illustrations from Memory series which document Tracey's childhood memories of sexual awakening and other experiences growing up in Margate
Margate
-Demography:As of the 2001 UK census, Margate had a population of 40,386.The ethnicity of the town was 97.1% white, 1.0% mixed race, 0.5% black, 0.8% Asian, 0.6% Chinese or other ethnicity....

 such as Fucking Down An Ally 16/5/95 (1995) and Illustrations from Memory, the year 1974. In The Livingroom (1994). Emin further produced a set of monoprints detailing her memories of Margate
Margate
-Demography:As of the 2001 UK census, Margate had a population of 40,386.The ethnicity of the town was 97.1% white, 1.0% mixed race, 0.5% black, 0.8% Asian, 0.6% Chinese or other ethnicity....

's iconic buildings such as Margate Harbour 16/5/95 (1995), The Lido 16/5/95 (1995) and Light House 15/5/95 (1995). Other drawings from 1994 include the Family Suite series, part of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, holds the national collection of modern art. When opened in 1960, the collection was held in Inverleith House, at the Royal Botanic Gardens...

 collection, consisting of 20 monoprints with "archetypal themes in Emin's art: sex, her family, her abortions, and Margate". This series of monoprints will be displayed for the first time from August 2008 at the Edinburgh based gallery as part of her first major retrospective, which has been called the Summer Blockbuster exhibition. A further Family Suite II set was exhibited in Los Angeles in November 2007 as part of Emin's solo show at Gagosian gallery.

Emin's monoprints are rarely displayed alone in exhibitions, they're particularly effective as collective fragments of intense emotional confrontation. Emin has made several works documenting painful moments of sadness and loneliness experienced when travelling to foreign cities for various exhibitions such as Thinking Of You (2005) and Bath White I (2005) which were from a series of monoprints drawn directly onto the USA Mondrian hotel stationery. Emin herself has said,

In summer 2009, Emin along with book publisher Rizzoli
RCS MediaGroup
RCS MediaGroup S.p.A. , based in Milan and listed on the Italian Stock Exchange, is an international multimedia publishing group that operates in daily newspapers, magazines and books, radio broadcasting, new media and digital and satellite TV...

 released a book titled One Thousand Drawings. As the title suggests, the book contains 1000 drawings of Emin's career since 1988. The book was released to coincide with Emin's show Those who suffer love at White Cube
White Cube
White Cube is a contemporary art gallery designed by MRJ Rundell & Associates in Hoxton Square in the East End of London Mason's Yard, in central London and White Cube Bermondsey in South East London...

 which is mainly a drawings show. Emin said in an interview that "We actually looked at about 2000 drawings and then chose 1000 drawings [for the book]... I'd probably done, over that period of time about 4000 drawings".

Monoprint drawings of mothers and children that Emin drew during a pregnancy in 1990 were included in a 2010 joint exhibition with Paula Rego
Paula Rego
Paula Rego is a painter born in Portugal although she is a naturalised British citizen.-Biography:Rego was born in the Portuguese capital Lisbon, the daughter of an electrical engineer who worked for the Marconi Company. Although this gave her a comfortable middle class home, the family was...

 and Mat Collishaw
Mat Collishaw
Matthew "Mat" Collishaw is an artist based in London, and one of the Young British Artists.-Career:Collishaw attended Goldsmiths, University of London , alongside Damien Hirst and other YBA artists....

 at the Foundling Museum
Foundling Museum
The Foundling Museum in London tells the story of the Foundling Hospital, Britain's first home for abandoned children. The museum houses the nationally important Foundling Hospital Art Collection as well as the Gerald Coke Handel Collection, the world's greatest privately amassed collection of...

.

Painting


Emin displayed six small watercolours in her Turner Prize
Turner Prize
The Turner Prize, named after the painter J. M. W. Turner, is an annual prize presented to a British visual artist under the age of 50. Awarding the prize is organised by the Tate gallery and staged at Tate Britain. Since its beginnings in 1984 it has become the United Kingdom's most publicised...

 exhibition in 1999, and also in her New York show Every Part Of Me's Bleeding held that same year, known as the Berlin Watercolour series (1998). These delicate, washed out but colourful watercolours include four portraits of Emin's face and were all painted by Emin in Berlin during 1998, adapted from Polaroids of the artist taking a bath. Each unique painting from this series share the same title, Berlin The Last Week In April 1998. Simon Wilson, spokesperson for the Tate, commented that Emin included the set of tiny Berlin watercolours "as a riposte to the accusation that there are no paintings" in the Turner Prize exhibitions. The bath theme seen in these watercolours was later revisited by Emin in her photographic work Sometimes I Feel Beautiful (2000) and in monoprints such as the Bath White (2005) series. With all these works, Emin explores a Mary Cassatt
Mary Cassatt
Mary Stevenson Cassatt was an American painter and printmaker. She lived much of her adult life in France, where she first befriended Edgar Degas and later exhibited among the Impressionists...

 quality of the "woman in a private moment".

Emin's focus on painting has developed over the past few years, starting with the Purple Virgin (2004) acrylic watercolour series of purple brush strokes depicting her naked open legs, and leading to paintings such as Asleep Alone With Legs Open (2005), the Reincarnation (2005) series and Masturbating (2006) amongst others.

In May 2005, London's Evening Standard
Evening Standard
The Evening Standard, now styled the London Evening Standard, is a free local daily newspaper, published Monday–Friday in tabloid format in London. It is the dominant regional evening paper for London and the surrounding area, with coverage of national and international news and City of London...

newspaper highlighted Emin's return to painting in their preview of her When I Think About Sex exhibition at White Cube
White Cube
White Cube is a contemporary art gallery designed by MRJ Rundell & Associates in Hoxton Square in the East End of London Mason's Yard, in central London and White Cube Bermondsey in South East London...

. Other works were nude self-portrait drawings. Emin was quoted: "For this show I wanted to show that I can really draw, and I think they are really sexy drawings."

Work for her 2007 show at the Venice Biennale
Venice Biennale
The Venice Biennale is a major contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years in Venice, Italy. The Venice Film Festival is part of it. So too is the Venice Biennale of Architecture, which is held in even years...

 (see below) included large-scale canvases of her legs and vagina. A watercolour series called The Purple Virgins were displayed. There are ten Purple Virgin works in total, six of which were shown at the Biennale. These were accompanied by two canvases of a similar style called How I Think I Feel 1 and 2.

The Venice Biennale was also the first time Emin's Abortion Watercolour series, painted in 1990, had ever been shown in public.

Jay Jopling uncovered a brand new Emin painting, Rose Virgin (2007), as part of White Cube's stand at the Frieze Art Fair in London's Regent's Park on 10 October 2007. More new paintings are expected to be shown in Emin's You Left Me Breathing exhibition in Los Angeles' Gagosian gallery from 2 November 2007, described in a recent interview as an 'exhibition of sculpture and painting'. A number of new paintings were on display including Get Ready For The Fuck Of Your Life (2007).

Photography


Emin has produced many photographic works throughout her career, including Monument Valley (Grand Scale) (1995–97) and Outside Myself (Monument Valley, reading ‘Exploration of the Soul’) (1995) which resulted "from a trip Emin made to the United States in 1994. She and her then boyfriend, the writer, curator and gallerist Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman is the founder of Carl Freedman Gallery . He previously worked as a writer and a curator, initially with Damien Hirst, to help pioneer the Young British Artists phenomenon.-Life and work:...

, drove from San Francisco to New York stopping off along the way to give readings from her book, Exploration of the Soul 1994. The photograph shows the artist sitting in an upholstered chair in Monument Valley
Monument Valley
Monument Valley is a region of the Colorado Plateau characterized by a cluster of vast sandstone buttes, the largest reaching above the valley floor. It is located on the northern border of Arizona with southern Utah , near the Four Corners area...

, a spectacular location on the southern border of Utah with northern Arizona, holding her book. Although it is open, it is not clear whether she is looking at the viewer or at the text in front of her. Emin gave her readings sitting in the chair, which she had inherited from her grandmother, which also became part of Emin's art, There's A Lot Of Money In Chairs (1994).

Other photographic works include a series of nine images comprising the work Naked Photos – Life Model Goes Mad (1996) documenting a painting performance Emin made in a room specially built in Galleri Andreas Brändström, Stockholm. Another photographic series, Trying On Clothes From My Friends (She Took The Shirt Off His Back) (1997), shows the artist trying on her friends’ clothes offering up questions of identity.

Other works such as I've Got It All (2000) show Emin with her "legs splayed on a red floor, clutching banknotes and coins to her crotch. Made at a time of public and financial success, the image connects the artist’s desire for money and success and her sexual desire (her role as consumer) with her use of her body and her emotional life to produce her art (the object of consumption)". Whilst Sometimes I Feel Beautiful (2000) pictures Emin lying alone in a bath. Both these works are examples of Emin using "large-scale photographs of herself to record and express moments of emotional significance in her life, frequently making reference to her career as an artist. The photographs have a staged quality, as though the artist is enacting a private ritual."

Emin's most iconic are the two self portraits taken inside her famous beach hut, The Last Thing I Said To You Is Don't Leave Me Here I (2000) and The Last Thing I Said To You Is Don't Leave Me Here II (2000). The latter two photographs are a diptych although they are often exhibited and sold separately. They depict a naked Emin on her knees inside her beach hut which she and friend Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas is an English artist. She is part of the generation of Young British Artists who emerged during the 1990s...

 had bought in Whitstable, Kent in 1992. The hut itself later became the sculpture The Last Thing I Said To You Is Don't Leave Me Here (The Hut) (1999). They are part of museum collections including Tate Modern
Tate Modern
Tate Modern is a modern art gallery located in London, England. It is Britain's national gallery of international modern art and forms part of the Tate group . It is the most-visited modern art gallery in the world, with around 4.7 million visitors per year...

, the Saatchi Gallery
Saatchi Gallery
The Saatchi Gallery is a London gallery for contemporary art, opened by Charles Saatchi in 1985 in order to exhibit his collection to the public. It has occupied different premises, first in North London, then the South Bank by the River Thames and currently in Chelsea. Saatchi's collection, and...

 and the National Portrait Gallery (United Kingdom) and have been mass produced as postcards sold in museum shops around the world.

Neon


Emin has also worked with neon
Neon
Neon is the chemical element that has the symbol Ne and an atomic number of 10. Although a very common element in the universe, it is rare on Earth. A colorless, inert noble gas under standard conditions, neon gives a distinct reddish-orange glow when used in either low-voltage neon glow lamps or...

 lights. One such piece is You Forgot To Kiss My Soul (2001) which consists of those words in blue neon inside a neon heart-shape. Another neon piece is made from the words Is Anal Sex Legal (1998). to complement another Is Legal Sex Anal (1998) For the Venice Biennale, Emin produced a series of new purple neon works, for example, Legs I (2007). This 2007 series of Legs neon works were directly inspired by the Purple Virgin (2004) watercolour series. For example, Legs IV (2007) directly follows the watercolour lines of the Purple Virgin 9 (2004). For a joint 2010 exhibition with Paula Rego and Mat Collishaw she decorated the front of the Foundling Museum with the neon words "Foundlings and fledglings are angels of this earth".

Emin has donated neon work to auction for charity and in 2007, her neon Keep Me Safe reached the highest price ever made for one of her neon works of over £60,000. A brand new neon piece called With You I Want To Live will be shown as part of Emin's You Left Me Breathing exhibition in November/December 2007 at the Gagosian Gallery in Los Angeles.

Fabric


Emin frequently works with fabric in the form of appliqués — material (often cut out into lettering) sewn onto other material. She collects fabric from curtains, bed sheets and linen and has done so for most of her life. She keeps such material that holds emotional significance for later use in her work. Many of her large scale appliqués are made on hotel linens, for example, It Always Hurts (2005), Sometimes I Feel So Fucking Lost (2005), Volcano Closed (2001) and Helter Fucking Skelter (2001). Hate And Power Can Be A Terrible Thing (2004), part of the Tate's collection of Emin's work, is a large scale blanket inspired in part by Margaret Thatcher due to her involvement in "an attack on 800 boys and men in the Argentinian navy" and other women for example women who steals their friends' boyfriends, Emin says of this work "about the kind of women I hate, the kind of women I have no respect for, women who betray and destroy the hearts of other women".

Emin's use of fabric is diverse, one of her most famous works came from sewing letters onto her grandmother's armchair in There's A Lot Of Money In Chairs (1994). The chair was very detailed, "including her and her twin brother’s names, the year of her grandmother’s birth (1901) and the year of her birth (1963) on either side of the words ‘another world’, referring to the passing of time. An exchange between the artist and her grandmother using the nicknames they had for each other: ‘Ok Puddin, Thanks Plum’, covers the bottom front of the chair and a saying of Emin’s grandmother’s, ‘There’s a lot of money in chairs’, is appliquéd in pink along the top and front of its back. Behind the chair back, the first page of Exploration of the Soul, handwritten onto fabric, is appliquéd together with other dictums such as, ‘It’s not what you inherit. It’s what you do with your inheritance’". Emin used the chair on a trip Emin made to the United States in 1994. Driving from San Francisco to New York stopping off along the way to give readings from her book, Exploration of the Soul (1994). Emin gave her readings sitting in the upholstered chair and "as she crossed the United States, the artist sewed the names of the places she visited – San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas, Monument Valley, Detroit, Pittsburgh, New York - onto the front of the chair". Emin also posed in the chair for two of her photographic works (see Photography) whilst in Monument Valley, in the Arizona Desert. It is currently on public display at Pallant House Gallery until 6 March 2011 as part of the exhibition, 'Contemporary Eye: Crossovers.'

Emin has made a large number of smaller scale works, often including hand sewn words and images, such as Falling Stars (2001), It Could Have Been Something (2001), Always Sorry (2005) and As Always (2005).

On 13 April 2007, Emin launched a specially designed flag made out of fabric with the message One Secret Is To Save Everything written in orange-red letters across the banner made up of hand-sewn swimming sperm. Tracey Emin's flag, at 21 feet by 14 feet, will fly above the Jubilee Gardens in the British capital until 31 July 2007, with the parliament building and the London Eye as backdrops. Emin called the artwork "a flag made from wishful thinking". The flag was commissioned by the South Bank Centre in London's Waterloo.

In June 2007, on returning from the Venice Biennale
Venice Biennale
The Venice Biennale is a major contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years in Venice, Italy. The Venice Film Festival is part of it. So too is the Venice Biennale of Architecture, which is held in even years...

, Emin donated a piece of artwork, a handsewn blanket called Star Trek Voyager to be auctioned at Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

's annual glamorous White Tie & Tiara Ball to raise money for The Elton John AIDS Foundation. The piece of artwork sold for £800,000.

Emin's works on fabric has been related to other artists such as Louise Bourgeois
Louise Bourgeois
Louise Joséphine Bourgeois , was a renowned French-American artist and sculptor, best known for her contributions to both modern and contemporary art, and for her spider structures, titled Maman, which resulted in her being nicknamed the Spiderwoman...

, who Emin actually mentions in a sewn work called The Older Woman (2005) with the phrase (monoprint on fabric), "I think my Dad should have gone out with someone older like Louise, Louise Bourgeois". Emin was interviewed by Alan Yentob
Alan Yentob
Alan Yentob is a British television executive and presenter who has worked throughout his career at the BBC.-Early life:...

 during the BBC's Imagine documentary Spiderwoman about Louise Bourgeois, aired in the UK on 13 November 2007.

Found objects


Emin has often made use of found object
Found object
A found object, in an artistic sense, indicates the use of an object which has not been designed for an artistic purpose, but which exists for another purpose already. Found objects may exist either as utilitarian, manufactured items, or things which occur in nature...

s in her work from the early use of a cigarette box found in a car crash in which her uncle died. The most well known example is My Bed
My Bed
My Bed is a work by the British artist Tracey Emin. First created in 1998, it was exhibited at the Tate Gallery in 1999 as one of the shortlisted works for the Turner Prize. It consisted of her bed with bedroom objects in an abject state, and gained much media attention...

, where she displayed her bed. Another instance is the removal of her beach hut from Whitstable
Whitstable
Whitstable is a seaside town in Northeast Kent, Southeast England. It is approximately north of the city of Canterbury and approximately west of the seaside town of Herne Bay. It is part of the City of Canterbury district and has a population of about 30,000.Whitstable is famous for its oysters,...

 to be displayed in a gallery. This work was titled The Last Thing I Said To You Is Don't Leave Me Here (The Hut) (1999).

She revisited the theme of the bed in 2002, with the mixed media installation, To Meet My Past (2002), another installation with a four poster bed
Four poster bed
A four-poster bed is a bed with four vertical columns, one in each corner, that support a tester, or upper panel. There are a number of antique four-poster beds extant dating to the 16th century and earlier; many of these early beds are highly ornate and are made from oak...

 with embroidered text such as Weird Sex and To Meet My Past hanging down alongside the mattress.

Emin also incorporated stones and rocks which had been thrown through her window in a mixed media piece in her 2005 show. The work consists of a monoprint of herself sitting on a chair with the stones lined up below the drawing in a vitrine.

The Leg (2004) included a plaster cast inside a vitrine, kept by the artist after she broke her leg, exhibited alongside a C-print photograph of the artist wearing the cast.

Installations


Emin has created a number of installation art pieces including Poor Thing (Sarah and Tracey) (2001) which was made up of two hanging frames, hospital gowns, a water bottle and wire. A similar installation called Feeling Pregnant III (2005) made up of fabric hung off wooden and metal coat hangers and stands was a later creation for Emin. Both these installations touch further on Emin's relationship with pregnancy and abortion and can be related to Louise Bourgeois
Louise Bourgeois
Louise Joséphine Bourgeois , was a renowned French-American artist and sculptor, best known for her contributions to both modern and contemporary art, and for her spider structures, titled Maman, which resulted in her being nicknamed the Spiderwoman...

' sculptures such as Untitled (1996), a mobile of hanging clothes, and Untitled (2007), a series of standing bronze sculptures.

The Perfect Place to Grow (2001) was a video installation with a set consisting of a wooden birdhouse, a DVD (shot on Super 8), monitor, trestle, plants, wooden ladder. This installation has been exhibited at the Tate Britain in 2004 in their room dedicated to Emin's work and also White Cube in 2001. It was dedicated to her father, creating the bird house as a tiny home for my dad and Emin thought of the works' title from the idea of nature and nurture.

Knowing My Enemy (2002) was a large scale installation created by Emin for her Modern Art Oxford
Modern Art Oxford
Modern Art Oxford is an art gallery established in 1965 in Oxford, England. From 1965 to 2002, it was called The Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.-Foundation:...

 solo show of that year. Consisting of reclaimed wood and steel, Emin created a wooden 'look-out' house upon a long, broken, wooden pier. It's Not the Way I Want to Die (2005) was another large scale installation, part of Emin's 2005 solo show at White Cube. Emin created a large rollercoaster track with reclaimed timber and metal. Displayed in the same show was a smaller installation work called Self Portrait (2005) which consisted of a tin bath, bamboo, wire and neon light. Another related installation Sleeping With You (2005) consisted of painted reclaimed timber and a thin neon light across a dark wall.

Films


Emin featured with her then boyfriend, Billy Childish
Billy Childish
Billy Childish is an English artist, painter, author, poet, photographer, film maker, singer and guitarist...

, in Quiet Lives (1982) (11 mins, 16 mm, written and directed by Eugene Doyen), once available with Cheated and Room for Rent in A Hangman Triple Bill, also known as The Hangman Trilogy, Hangman Films
Hangman Books
Hangman Books is a British independent small press founded in 1981 by Billy Childish, who remains its owner and editor. It publishes poetry and some fiction...

. Quiet Lives is discussed in an article on Childish's films in No Focus: punk on film (Headpress, 2006).

An autobiographical work is the film
Film
A film, also called a movie or motion picture, is a series of still or moving images. It is produced by recording photographic images with cameras, or by creating images using animation techniques or visual effects...

, CV Cunt Vernacular (1997), in which Emin narrates her story from childhood in Margate, through her student years, abortions and destruction of her early work.

Top Spot (2004) is a feature-length non-fiction production, mixing DV footage and Super 8 film into lyrical montage. The title refers to a youth centre/disco in Margate (but also a sexual reference), Top Spot. The film draws heavily on Emin's teenage experiences of growing up in Margate, and features six teenage girls who share their stories. The natural beauty of the sea and the sunsets is linked with Margate’s more manmade pleasures, underscored with a selection of 1970s songs that formed the soundtrack to the artist’s own adolescence. It was shot during the summertime in Margate, London, and Egypt. Emin withdrew the film from general distribution in cinemas, after the film was rated with an 18 certificate. In December 2004, the film was broadcast on BBC3 television in the UK. A DVD of the film was released in 2004.

Books

  • Six Turkish Tales (1987) was published by Hangman books
    Hangman Books
    Hangman Books is a British independent small press founded in 1981 by Billy Childish, who remains its owner and editor. It publishes poetry and some fiction...

     as written by T. K. Emin. Emin's editor for Six Turkish Tales was Billy Childish
    Billy Childish
    Billy Childish is an English artist, painter, author, poet, photographer, film maker, singer and guitarist...

     and Bill Lewis
    Bill Lewis
    William "Bill" Lewis is an English artist, story-teller, poet and mythographer. He was a founder-member of The Medway Poets and of the Stuckists art group.-Early life:...

     and the cover was illustrated by Billy Childish.
  • Exploration Of The Soul (1994) An autobiographical short story which goes from Emin¹s conception to age thirteen. It was a limited edition of 200 copies. Signed on inside with 2 original colour photographs. Book is housed in a hand-sewn white cloth bag with 2 coloured cloth letters "TE" hand sewn (colours such came in green, blue, yellow, pink). In 2003, the book was re-released as an edition of 1000 by Counter Editions (minus the cloth bag/photographs).

  • Details of Depression (2003) Written by Emin using her full name, Tracey Karima Emin: Cyprus/London. Another limited edition, stamped on the back cover, which brings together an ancient Arabic poem and a series of photographs taken around Northern Cyprus. Published by Counter Editions at the same time as the re-issued version of Exploration Of The Soul.
  • Strangeland (2005) was Emin's long-awaited memoir. It is divided into three sections, "Motherland", "Fatherland" and "Traceyland". It is written in the first person and conveys an unvarnished look at her life from childhood. Jeanette Winterson
    Jeanette Winterson
    Jeanette Winterson OBE is a British novelist.-Early years:Winterson was born in Manchester and adopted on 21 January 1960. She was raised in Accrington, Lancashire, by Constance and John William Winterson...

     wrote, "Her latest writings are painfully honest, and certainly some of it should have been edited out by someone who loves her." Emin's editor for Strangeland was the British novelist Nicholas Blincoe
    Nicholas Blincoe
    Nicholas Blincoe is an English author, critic and screenwriter. He is the author of six novels, Acid Casuals , Jello Salad , Manchester Slingback , The Dope Priest , White Mice , Burning Paris...

    . This book also attracted considerable media coverage and Billy Childish publicly questioned some accounts in newspaper articles.
  • Those Who Suffer Love (2009) A new compiled selection of Tracey Emin’s GQ poems complete with accompanying drawings.
  • Love Is What You Want (2011) A new survey of work, accompanying Emin's major show at the Hayward Gallery
    Hayward Gallery
    The Hayward Gallery is an art gallery within the Southbank Centre, part of an area of major arts venues on the South Bank of the River Thames, in central London, England. It is sited adjacent to the other Southbank Centre buildings and also the Royal National Theatre and British Film Institute...

     in London.
  • My Life in a Column (2011)

Sculpture


In February 2005, Emin's first public artwork, a bronze sculpture, went on display outside the Oratory, adjacent to Liverpool Cathedral
Liverpool Cathedral
Liverpool Cathedral is the Church of England cathedral of the Diocese of Liverpool, built on St James's Mount in Liverpool and is the seat of the Bishop of Liverpool. Its official name is the Cathedral Church of Christ in Liverpool but it is dedicated to Christ and the Blessed Virgin...

. It consists of a small bird perched on a tall bronze pole, and is designed so that the bird seems to disappear when viewed from the front. It was commissioned by the BBC
BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

. "Emin's work stands outside The Oratory, in Upper Duke Street just outside the Cathedral. The Roman Standard - which features a small bird on top of a four-metre high bronze pole - is a tribute to the city's famous symbol the Liver Bird. The sculpture was commissioned by the BBC as part of their contribution to the art05 festival and Liverpool's year as European Capital of Culture in 2008. Emin says the sculpture represents strength and femininity." In September 2008, Emin will unveil a brand new neon work that will "be installed in the well of the cathedral" Emin herself says of her continuing relationship of making public sculptures in the town, "When Liverpool is Capital of Culture in 2008, I'll be making a large work for the Anglican Cathedral, which I'm really looking forward to."

Other sculptures have included Death Mask (2002) which is a bronze cast of her own head. Emin loaned this work to the National Portrait Gallery in 2005,
At Emin's 2007 Venice Biennale exhibition, as well as the central exhibition's Tower sculptures, tall wooden towers consisting of small pieces of timber piled together, a new small bronze-cast sculpture work of a child's pink sock was revealed Sock (2007) on display on the steps of the British Pavilion. Her exhibition again attracted widespread UK media coverage, both positive and negative.

In September 2007, Emin announced she would be exhibiting new sculpture work in the inaugural Folkestone
Folkestone
Folkestone is the principal town in the Shepway District of Kent, England. Its original site was in a valley in the sea cliffs and it developed through fishing and its closeness to the Continent as a landing place and trading port. The coming of the railways, the building of a ferry port, and its...

 Triennial which took place in the Kent town from June until September 2008. In June 2008, Emin discussed the Folkestone
Folkestone
Folkestone is the principal town in the Shepway District of Kent, England. Its original site was in a valley in the sea cliffs and it developed through fishing and its closeness to the Continent as a landing place and trading port. The coming of the railways, the building of a ferry port, and its...

 sculptures, stating the "high percentage" of teenage pregnancies in the Kent town had inspired this latest work. Emin said her contribution would be different pieces placed around the town,
Emin's 2007 solo show at Gagosian Gallery
Gagosian Gallery
Gagosian Gallery is a contemporary art gallery owned and directed by Larry Gagosian. There are currently eleven gallery spaces: three in New York; two in London; one in each of Beverly Hills, Rome, Athens, Paris, Geneva, Hong Kong and Moscow.-1980s:...

 in Los Angeles' Beverly Hills included brand new sculpture works described by Emin as, "some very strange little sculptures. They are nearly all of animals, apart from one, which is a pineapple. They rest on mini-plinths made in a really brilliant LA, beach, California, Fifties surfer kind of style. Different woods put together in cute pattern formations. In some places the wood is 18th-century floorboards, some bits of cabin from tall ships or things which could have been found on the seashore – driftwood." The New York Times included Emin in a piece about artists who are Originals with a new photograph with two sculptures, one of a small bird on a thin stand and a large seagull, both sculptures placed upon wooden plinths. Gagosian further described the many different sculptures from the show as, "a group of delicate wood and jesmonite sculptures, which expand on the spirals, rollercoasters, and bridges of recent years. Others incorporate cast bronze figures – seagulls, songbirds, and frogs — or objects combining cement and glass, which are placed on tables or bundled bases made from found timbers."

In late November 2007, it was announced that Emin was one of six artists to have been shortlisted to propose a sculpture for the fourth plinth in London's Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square is a public space and tourist attraction in central London, England, United Kingdom. At its centre is Nelson's Column, which is guarded by four lion statues at its base. There are a number of statues and sculptures in the square, with one plinth displaying changing pieces of...

. The other shortlisted artists were Jeremy Deller
Jeremy Deller
Jeremy Deller is an English conceptual, video and installation artist. He is a Turner Prize winner.Deller is best-known for his Battle of Orgreave , a reenactment of the actual Battle of Orgreave which occurred during the UK miners' strike in 1984.-Life and work:Jeremy Deller was born in London,...

, Antony Gormley
Antony Gormley
Antony Mark David Gormley OBE RA is a British sculptor. His best known works include the Angel of the North, a public sculpture in the North of England, commissioned in 1995 and erected in February 1998, Another Place on Crosby Beach near Liverpool, and Event Horizon, a multi-part site...

, Anish Kapoor
Anish Kapoor
Anish Kapoor CBE RA is a British sculptor of Indian birth. Born in Mumbai , Kapoor has lived and worked in London since the early 1970s when he moved to study art, first at the Hornsey College of Art and later at the Chelsea School of Art and Design.He represented Britain in the XLIV Venice...

, Yinka Shonibare
Yinka Shonibare
Yinka Shonibare, MBE, is a British-Nigerian artist living in the UK. He readily acknowledges physical disability as part of his identity but creates work in which this is just one strand of a far richer weave.-Life and career:...

, and Bob and Roberta Smith - the professional name of Patrick Brill
Patrick Brill
Patrick Brill, better known by his pseudonym Bob and Roberta Smith is a British contemporary artist.-Life and work:Brill graduated from University of Reading, Brill was awarded a scholarship at The British School at Rome while still an undergraduate...

. The contenders were commissioned to produce a scale model of their idea. On 6 January 2008, it was revealed Emin's proposal was a lifesize model of a group of four meerkat
Meerkat
The meerkat or suricate, Suricata suricatta, is a small mammal belonging to the mongoose family. Meerkats live in all parts of the Kalahari Desert in Botswana, in much of the Namib Desert in Namibia and southwestern Angola, and in South Africa. A group of meerkats is called a "mob", "gang" or "clan"...

s, the desert mammal. Entitled Something for the Future it consists of a sculpture of four meerkats "as a symbol of unity and safety." as "whenever Britain is in crisis or, as a nation, is experiencing sadness and loss (for example, after Princess Diana's funeral), the next programme on television is 'Meerkats United.'" The successful proposals were announced in 2008 as Gormley, whose project One & Other
One & Other
One & Other was a public art project by Antony Gormley, in which 2,400 members of the public occupied the usually vacant fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square, London, for an hour each for 100 days. The project began at 9am on Monday 6 July 2009, and ran until 14 October. The first person to officially...

 occupied the plinth in summer 2009 and Shonibare, whose work Nelson's Ship in a Bottle was unveiled in 2010.

Definition of art


In common with many YBAs, including Damien Hirst
Damien Hirst
Damien Steven Hirst is an English artist, entrepreneur and art collector. He is the most prominent member of the group known as the Young British Artists , who dominated the art scene in Britain during the 1990s. He is internationally renowned, and is reportedly Britain's richest living artist,...

, Emin employs assistants for fabrication purposes, for example sewing the lettering onto her appliquéd pieces.

A poster she photocopied and put up around her home when her cat Docket went missing became an object collected by people, but was excluded by Emin from her canon.

In 2000 Emin was commissioned, as part of a scheme throughout London titled Art in Sacred Spaces, to collaborate with children on an artwork at Ecclesbourne Primary School in Islington, North London. Pupils made the piece with her in Emin's style of sewing cut out letters onto a large piece of material. In 2004, the school enquired if Emin would sign the work so that the school could sell it as an original to raise funds. They planned to auction the piece for £35,000 for an arts unit, as it could not afford to display the large work. Emin and her gallery White Cube refused saying that it was not a piece of her art, therefore reducing its value and requested it be returned. But Emin quickly came to an agreement with the school, where she paid £4,000 to create a perspex display box for the patchwork quilt to be showcased. Taking as her theme the title "Tell me something beautiful", Emin invited eight-year-olds to nominate their ideas of beauty and then to sew the keywords in felt letters on bright fabric squares. The resulting bold patchwork, featured words such as "tree", "sunrise", "dolphin" and "nan". Art critic John Slyce, who has worked on school collaborations with artists, supported Emin and White Cube's decision saying, "This is a horrific precedent for the school to try to set. They were lucky to have an artist of that stature spending that amount of time with them ... the artwork should remain in context with the kids. Children's primary experience of art should not be as a commodity."

Modern Art Oxford (2002-2003)


From November 2002 - January 2003, Tracey Emin's solo exhibition This Is Another Place was held at Modern Art Oxford
Modern Art Oxford
Modern Art Oxford is an art gallery established in 1965 in Oxford, England. From 1965 to 2002, it was called The Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.-Foundation:...

 and marked the museum's reopening and renaming to Modern Art Oxford
Modern Art Oxford
Modern Art Oxford is an art gallery established in 1965 in Oxford, England. From 1965 to 2002, it was called The Museum of Modern Art, Oxford.-Foundation:...

. The exhibition was Emin's first British exhibition since 1997. The exhibition contained drawings, etchings, film, neon works such as Fuck off and die, you slag, and sculptures including a large scale wooden pier, called Knowing My Enemy, with a wooden shack on top made from reclaimed timber. Emin commented that her choice to exhibit in Oxford was due to personal reasons as museum director Andrew Nairne
Andrew Nairne
Andrew Nairne , is Director for Arts Strategy at the Arts Council England.Nairne graduated with an art history MA from the University of St Andrews in 1983. He was the Visual Arts Director at the Scottish Arts Council and for eight years he was the Exhibitions Director at the Centre for...

 had always been "a big supporter of my work". An exhibition catalogue included 50 illustrations: "a compilation of images and writings reflecting her life, her sexual experiences and her desires and fears."

Momart fire (2004)



On 24 May 2004, a fire in a Momart storage warehouse
Momart
Momart is a British company specialising in the storage, transportation, and installation of works of art. It has been owned by Falkland Islands Holdings since 5 March 2008....

 in East London destroyed many works from the Saatchi collection
Saatchi Gallery
The Saatchi Gallery is a London gallery for contemporary art, opened by Charles Saatchi in 1985 in order to exhibit his collection to the public. It has occupied different premises, first in North London, then the South Bank by the River Thames and currently in Chelsea. Saatchi's collection, and...

, including Emin's famous tent with appliquéd letters, Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963–1995 ("The Tent") (1995) and The Last Thing I Said To You Is Don't Leave Me Here ("The Hut") (1999), Emin's blue wooden beach hut that she bought with fellow artist Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas
Sarah Lucas is an English artist. She is part of the generation of Young British Artists who emerged during the 1990s...

 and shared with her boyfriend of the time, the gallerist Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman
Carl Freedman is the founder of Carl Freedman Gallery . He previously worked as a writer and a curator, initially with Damien Hirst, to help pioneer the Young British Artists phenomenon.-Life and work:...

. Emin spoke out angrily against what she perceived as a general public lack of sympathy, and even amusement, at the loss of the artworks in the fire. However, she also put the loss in her perspective, commenting:

Venice Biennale (2007)


In August 2006, the British Council
British Council
The British Council is a United Kingdom-based organisation specialising in international educational and cultural opportunities. It is registered as a charity both in England and Wales, and in Scotland...

 announced that they had chosen Emin to produce a show of new and past works for the British Pavilion at the 52nd Venice Biennale
Venice Biennale
The Venice Biennale is a major contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years in Venice, Italy. The Venice Film Festival is part of it. So too is the Venice Biennale of Architecture, which is held in even years...

 in 2007. Emin was the second woman to produce a solo show for the UK at the Biennale, following Rachel Whiteread
Rachel Whiteread
Rachel Whiteread, CBE is an English artist, best known for her sculptures, which typically take the form of casts. She won the annual Turner Prize in 1993—the first woman to win the prize....

 in 1997. In a BBC interview, Andrea Rose, the commissioner for the British Pavilion, said the exhibition would allow Emin's work to be viewed "in an international context and at a distance from the YBA
Young British Artists
Young British Artists or YBAs is the name given to a loose group of visual artists who first began to exhibit together in London, in 1988...

 generation with which she came to prominence."

Emin has chosen the title Borrowed Light for the in-depth exhibition of her work. The artist produced new work especially for the British Pavilion, using a wide variety of media - from needlework, photography and video to drawing, painting, sculpture and neon. A promotional British Council flyer includes an image of a previously unseen monoprint for the exhibition called Fat Minge (1994) which will be included in the show whilst the Telegraph newspaper featured a photo of a new purple neon Legs I (2007) which will be on display (directly inspired by Emin's 2004 purple watercolour Purple Virgin series. Emin herself summed up her Biennale exhibition work as,
Emin was interviewed about the Venice Biennale in her East London studio by the BBC's Kirsty Wark
Kirsty Wark
Kirsteen Anne Wark is a British journalist and television presenter best known for fronting the BBC Two's news and current affairs programme Newsnight since 1993, and its weekly arts annexe Newsnight Review which is now relaunched as "The Review Show".-Biography:Wark was born in Dumfries to Jimmy...

; this was broadcast on BBC Four
BBC Four
BBC Four is a British television network operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation and available to digital television viewers on Freeview, IPTV, satellite and cable....

 television channel in November 2006. Emin showed Wark some work-in-progress, which included large-scale canvases with paintings of Emin's legs and vagina. Starting with the Purple Virgin (2004) acrylic watercolour series with their strong purple brush strokes depicting Emin's naked open legs, leading to Emin's paintings in 2005-6 such as Asleep Alone With Legs Open (2005), the Reincarnation (2005) series and Masturbating (2006) amongst others, these works are a significant new development in her artistic output.

In an interview with Lynn Barber
Lynn Barber
Lynn Barber is a British journalist, who writes for The Sunday Times.-Early life:Barber attended Lady Eleanor Holles School...

 published in The Observer newspaper the week before the launch of Emin's biennale show, the artist said of her work, Andrea Rose, the British Pavilion commissioner, added to this commenting on the art Emin has produced, 'It's remarkably ladylike. There is no ladette work - no toilet with a poo in it - and actually it is very mature I think, quite lovely. She is much more interested in formal values than people might expect, and it shows in this exhibition. It's been revelatory working with her. Tracey's reputation for doing shows and hanging them is not good, but she's been a dream to work with. What it shows is that she's moved a long way away from the YBAs. She's quite a lady actually!'

Royal Academician (2007)


On 29 March 2007, Tracey Emin was made Royal Academician by the Royal Academy of Arts. Emin became a member of the Royal Academy joining an elite group of artists including David Hockney
David Hockney
David Hockney, CH, RA, is an English painter, draughtsman, printmaker, stage designer and photographer, who is based in Bridlington, Yorkshire and Kensington, London....

, Peter Blake, Anthony Caro and Alison Wilding. This entitles Emin to exhibit up to six works in the annual summer exhibition.

Emin has a long history of exhibiting her art at the Royal Academy, having been invited to include works at their Summer Exhibitions in 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004 and 2001. For 2004's Summer Exhibition, Emin was chosen by fellow artist David Hockney to submit two monoprints, one called And I'd Love To Be The One (1997) and another on the topic of Emin's abortion called Ripped Up (1995) as that year's theme celebrated the art of drawing as part of the creative process. Whilst 2007 saw Emin exhibit a neon work called Angel (2005). Emin's art was first included at the Royal Academy as part of the Sensation exhibition in 1997.

For the June 2008 Summer Exhibition, Emin has been invited to curate a gallery. Emin also gave a public talk in June 2008 interviewed by art critic and broadcaster Matthew Collings
Matthew Collings
-Life and career:In one of his books on art, Collings states that, in his early teenage years, he ran away to Canada. This act was preceded by a period of hanging around in a house in Oakley Street, Chelsea, whose residents included members of various rock bands including Mighty Baby and Family...

, contemplating her role within the Royal Academy, the Academy’s relationship to the contemporary art world, and her perspective, as an artist, on hanging and curating a gallery in the Summer Exhibition.

Twenty Years retrospective (2008)


The first major retrospective of Emin's work was held in Edinburgh
Edinburgh
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, the second largest city in Scotland, and the eighth most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council governs one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The council area includes urban Edinburgh and a rural area...

 between August and November 2008 attracting over 40,000 visitors, breaking the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, holds the national collection of modern art. When opened in 1960, the collection was held in Inverleith House, at the Royal Botanic Gardens...

’s record for an exhibition of work by a living artist.

The large scale exhibition included the full range of Emin's art from the rarely seen early work to the iconic My Bed (1998) and the room-sized installation Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made (1996). The show displayed her unique appliquéd blankets, paintings, sculptures, films, neons, drawings and monoprints. The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, holds the national collection of modern art. When opened in 1960, the collection was held in Inverleith House, at the Royal Botanic Gardens...

 was the only UK venue for the show which travels to the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo in Málaga
Málaga
Málaga is a city and a municipality in the Autonomous Community of Andalusia, Spain. With a population of 568,507 in 2010, it is the second most populous city of Andalusia and the sixth largest in Spain. This is the southernmost large city in Europe...

, Spain and then to the Kunstmuseum in Bern, Switzerland from 2009.

It was reported on 6 November 2008 that Emin gifted a major sculpture to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, holds the national collection of modern art. When opened in 1960, the collection was held in Inverleith House, at the Royal Botanic Gardens...

 as a "thank you" to both the gallery and the city of Edinburgh
Edinburgh
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, the second largest city in Scotland, and the eighth most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council governs one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The council area includes urban Edinburgh and a rural area...

. The work called Roman Standard (2005) comprises a 13 feet (4 m) bronze pole, surmounted by a little bird, cast in bronze. The work has an estimated value of at least £75,000.

Love Is What You Want retrospective (2011)


In May–August 2011, a major survey exhibition at London's Hayward Gallery
Hayward Gallery
The Hayward Gallery is an art gallery within the Southbank Centre, part of an area of major arts venues on the South Bank of the River Thames, in central London, England. It is sited adjacent to the other Southbank Centre buildings and also the Royal National Theatre and British Film Institute...

 consisted of work from all aspects of Emin’s art practice, revealing facets of the artist and her work that are frequently overlooked. The exhibition included painting, drawing, photography, textiles, video and sculpture, with rarely before seen early works alongside more recent large-scale installations. Emin made a new series of outdoor sculptures especially for this solo show.

The Vanishing Lake - Frieze Fair (2011)


On October 6th 2011 Emin opened a site-specific exhibition at Fitzroy Square. The title is taken from her novel which has served as a catalyst for a series of new works, created for a neoclassical house designed by Robert Adam in 1794. The exhibition also featured a series of embroidered texts and hand-woven tapestries continue Emin’s interest in the domestic and handcrafted tradition.

On the afternoon of October 15th graffiti artist RSH poured liters of bright red paint on the street and sidewalk outside the Gregorian building at 6 Fitzroy Square as a statement about the false nature of Emin's art work.

London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games


Tracey Emin is a mentor on the BA Great Britons Programme, and will mentor an up and coming British talent to produce artwork for 12 BA aircraft in the run up to the London 2012 Games. Emin will also produce a poster and limited edition print for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, one of only 12 British artists selected.

Stuckism




Emin's relationship with the artist and musician Billy Childish
Billy Childish
Billy Childish is an English artist, painter, author, poet, photographer, film maker, singer and guitarist...

 led to the name of the Stuckism
Stuckism
Stuckism is an international art movement founded in 1999 by Billy Childish and Charles Thomson to promote figurative painting in opposition to conceptual art...

 movement in 1999. Childish, who had mocked Emin's new affiliation to conceptualism in the early '90s, was told by Emin, "Your paintings are stuck, you are stuck! – Stuck! Stuck! Stuck!" (that is, stuck in the past for not accepting the YBA approach to art). He recorded the incident in the poem, "Poem for a Pissed Off Wife" published in "Big Hart and Balls" Hangman Books
Hangman Books
Hangman Books is a British independent small press founded in 1981 by Billy Childish, who remains its owner and editor. It publishes poetry and some fiction...

 1994, from which Charles Thomson
Charles Thomson (artist)
Charles Thomson is an English artist, painter, poet and photographer. In the early 1980s he was a member of The Medway Poets. In 1999 he named and co-founded the Stuckists art movement with Billy Childish. He has curated Stuckist shows, organised demonstrations against the Turner Prize, run an art...

, who knew them both, later coined the term Stuckism.

Emin and Childish had remained on friendly terms up until 1999, but the activities of the Stuckist group offended her and caused a lasting rift with Childish. In a 2003 interview, she was asked about the Stuckists:

Childish left the Stuckist movement in 2001.

Charity work


Emin is well known for her charity work including raising over a million pounds for children's charities such as the NSPCC
NSPCC
The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children is a United Kingdom charity campaigning and working in child protection.-History:...

 and for HIV/AIDS charities including the Terrence Higgins Trust
Terrence Higgins Trust
Terrence Higgins Trust is a British charity that campaigns on various issues related to AIDS and HIV. In particular, the charity aims to reduce the spread of HIV and promote good sexual health ; to provide services on a national and local level to people with, affected by, or at risk of...

. Emin frequently donates original artworks for charity auctions, and has often adopted the role of auctioneer on the charity night to help increase the highest bid.

In June 2007, on returning from the Venice Biennale
Venice Biennale
The Venice Biennale is a major contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years in Venice, Italy. The Venice Film Festival is part of it. So too is the Venice Biennale of Architecture, which is held in even years...

, Emin donated a piece of artwork, a handsewn blanket called Star Trek Voyager to be auctioned at Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

's annual glamorous White Tie & Tiara Ball to raise money for The Elton John AIDS Foundation. The piece of artwork sold for £800,000. Also in June 2007, Emin's neon work Keep Me Safe reached the highest price ever (at that time) made for one of her neon works of over £60,000.

Emin has participated in The Independent
The Independent
The Independent is a British national morning newspaper published in London by Independent Print Limited, owned by Alexander Lebedev since 2010. It is nicknamed the Indy, while the Sunday edition, The Independent on Sunday, is the Sindy. Launched in 1986, it is one of the youngest UK national daily...

 newspaper's Christmas Appeal for many years, where she has offered for auction bespoke artworks and also drawing lessons with the artist. In December 2006, Emin's lot raised £14,000 for a one-on-one drawing lesson, over champagne and cake, with the artist. The following year, in December 2007, Emin's lot raised £25,150 for their appeal offering a special unique drawing of the highest bidder's pet embroidered on to a cushion in Emin's trademark style.

In January 2008, Emin went to Uganda where she had set up the brand new "Tracey Emin Library" at the rural Forest High School. She explained in her newspaper column, "Schools here don't have libraries. In fact, rural areas have very little. Most have no doctor, no clinic, no hospital; schools are few and far between. Education cannot afford to be a priority, but it should be... I think this library may be just the beginning."

On Valentine's Day
Valentine's Day
Saint Valentine's Day, commonly shortened to Valentine's Day, is an annual commemoration held on February 14 celebrating love and affection between intimate companions. The day is named after one or more early Christian martyrs named Saint Valentine, and was established by Pope Gelasius I in 496...

 2008, Emin donated a red, heart-shaped neon artwork called I Promise To Love You (2007) for a charity auction to raise money for The Global Fund, which helps women and children affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa. The auction was called (Auction) RED. The work sold for a record price $220,000, which was much higher than the guide estimates of between $60,000 and $80,000.

Music


In 1998, Emin duetted with pop singer Boy George
Boy George
Boy George is a British singer-songwriter who was part of the English New Romantic movement which emerged in the early 1980s. He helped give androgyny an international stage with the success of Culture Club during the 1980s. His music is often classified as blue-eyed soul, which is influenced by...

 on a song called Burning Up, released on an 18 track audio CD that accompanied the book We love you.

In 2005, Emin compiled a CD of her favourite music called Music To Cry To released and sold by the UK household furnishings retailer and brand Habitat
Habitat (retailer)
Habitat Retail Ltd. is a retailer of household furnishings in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, and has franchised outlets in other countries. Founded in 1964 by Terence Conran, it was sold by the IKANO Group, owned by the Kamprad family, in December 2009 to Hilco, a restructuring...

.

In 2009, Emin designed the album artwork for singer/songwriter Harper Simon
Harper Simon
Harper James Simon is an American singer-songwriter, musician and producer. He is the son of musician Paul Simon and Paul's first wife, Peggy Harper.-Early life:...

, son of Paul Simon
Paul Simon
Paul Frederic Simon is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist.Simon is best known for his success, beginning in 1965, as part of the duo Simon & Garfunkel, with musical partner Art Garfunkel. Simon wrote most of the pair's songs, including three that reached number one on the US singles...

. The front cover depicts an aeroplane, drawn in Emin's trademark scratchy monoprint style.

Political views


Emin has been a critic of Britain's Labour tax regime, stating "I’m simply not willing to pay tax at 50%", she is "very seriously considering leaving Britain", and suggests she will live in France "The French have lower tax rates and they appreciate arts and culture". Emin has since corrected the rumour that she intends to leave the country, stating that a journalist she spoke to previously exaggerated her comments, and that London is her home, and is the context in which she belongs.

The Independent
The Independent
The Independent is a British national morning newspaper published in London by Independent Print Limited, owned by Alexander Lebedev since 2010. It is nicknamed the Indy, while the Sunday edition, The Independent on Sunday, is the Sindy. Launched in 1986, it is one of the youngest UK national daily...

newspaper reported in August 2010 that Emin is thought of as a supporter of the Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

. Indeed, in an interview with the New Statesman
New Statesman
New Statesman is a British centre-left political and cultural magazine published weekly in London. Founded in 1913, and connected with leading members of the Fabian Society, the magazine reached a circulation peak in the late 1960s....

she revealed that she voted for the Conservatives at the 2010 General Election, adding, "We've got the best government at the moment that we've ever had."

Further reading

  • Elliot, Patrick and Schnabel, Julian. Tracey Emin: Twenty Years (National Galleries of Scotland, 2008) ISBN 978-1906270087.
  • Emin, Tracey. Borrowed Light: the British Pavilion, Venice Biennale 2007 (London: British Council, 2007) ISBN 0863555896.
  • Emin, Tracey. Tracey Emin: Works 1963 - 2006 (London: Rizzoli, 2006) ISBN 0-8478-2877-8.
  • Brown, Neal. Tracey Emin (Tate's Modern Artists Series) (London: Tate, 2006) ISBN 1-8543-7542-3.
  • Doyle, Jennifer. Sex Objects: Art and the Dialectics of Desire (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2006) ISBN 0-8166-4526-4.
  • Emin, Tracey. Strangeland (London: Scepter, 2005) ISBN 0-3407-6944-0
  • Emin, Tracey. I Can Feel Your Smile (New York: Lehmann Maupin, 2005)
  • Emin, Tracey. The Is Another Place (Oxford: Museum of Modern Art, Oxford; Limited edition, 2002) ISBN 1-9013-5215-3
  • Emin, Tracey, Brown, Neal and Kent, Sarah and Collings, Matthew. Tracey Emin (London: Jay Jopling/White Cube, 1998) ISBN 0-9522-6902-3
  • Merck, Mandy and Townsend, Chris (eds). The Art of Tracey Emin (London: Thames & Hudson, 2002) ISBN 0-5002-8385-0
  • Remes, Outi. "After Bad Taste: Tracey Emin’s Work on Abortion and Other Confessions" in Harris, Jonathan. (ed.) Inside the Death Drive Excess and Apocalypse in the World of the Chapman Brothers. (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press and Tate Liverpool, 2010) 119-143. ISBN 9781846311925.
  • Remes, Outi. “Replaying the Old Stereotypes into an Artistic Role: the case of Tracey Emin” in Women’s History Review (Vol. 18, No. 4, September 2009) 561-577.

External links