Met John and Jasmine at Tate Britain, had some coffee and pretended we couldn't see Russell Brand sitting opposite us, snogging a ladyfriend.
Mark Titchner's work has grown on me since I first saw it, although I'm always a fan of spinning optical illusions and slogans, I originally thought he was a bit too ironic and retinal, but I think the jarring difference between those criticisms alerted me to the possiblity that there was more going on:
I enjoyed his slightly folky take on advertising and propaganda, changing it from something manipulative into an ideology that persuaded you with its charm and wit. NO I wasn't just hypnotised by the pretty spinning wheels and flashing screens. Oh, OK, maybe a bit. What let his part of the show down was the way there was too much crammed into one room, but hopefully that won't affect how well he does as the judging is based on the original show not the hang at the Tate, right?
Rebecca Warren's sculptures were in the lumpy clay style that seems to be the vogue, hinting at figures, but never really going anywere. They were surrounded by vitrines with assemblages made from scraps from her studio, that just remided me of the 3D doodles people make when they've got their minds on something else and are fiddling with the sellotape and blu-tac. Maybe that was the point.
Tomma Abts' paintings left me thoroughly cold, they're all 48 x 38 cm and often suggest some trompe l'oeil (obviously popular this year), but didn't seem to work very well. As I was looking for pictures for this though, I did find some that worked better, maybe the computer screen is a better medium for her.
Phil Collins (no, not THAT one) did some work that was meant to be about the effect reality TV has on the participants, with a video of him on one wall looking concerned at the plight of a former reality star on the other wall. The blurb suggested this might be a comment on the importance of TV coverage to the Turner Prize, possibly.
There was also a working office installation, which was unstaffed as it was the weekend, but did make his work more interesting to me, he does seem to fit into the relational aesthetic craze in contemporary art so might win, but who knows?
Photos nicked from the Telegraph Slideshow which also has more information, and here's a link to the Tate Turner Prize page as I'm addicted to putting links on things.
After all that we went to the pub and plotted, fortunately managed to shake off Brand at this point, the creepy stalker...