Two of those named, Luke Fowler and Elizabeth Price, are filmmakers whose work is often installed in museums. Mr. Fowler was nominated for the latest in a trilogy of cinematic collages he has made about the Scottish psychiatrist R.D. Laing, and Ms. Price was cited for video installations that typically address disasters — a ship sinking, a fire — and are accompanied by music that includes both pop and church choirs.
Paul Noble, also shortlisted, is engaged in a long-term project that began in 1996, in which he has created a dystopic fictional metropolis called Nobson Newtown. He draws panels as large as 15 feet high, peopling them with human figures drawn as pieces of excrement.
But it is the fourth nominee, performance artist Spartacus Chetwynd, who chose her artistic name in part because it sounds odd and vaguely annoying, who is perhaps the most unconventional. She specializes in restaging well-known works from pop culture, like Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video or F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “Great Gatsby,” with a satirical twist; in 2003 she reimagined Jabba the Hutt of “Star Wars” as a smooth-talking ladies’ man.
“It doesn’t look like it’s setting out to be controversial” or “overly challenging,” Penelope Curtis, director of the Tate Britain museum and chair of the Turner jury, told the BBC; “I believe that people will see that there’s something serious going on here and that these artists have been working for years on very serious projects.”
All four nominees will have their work featured in an exhibition scheduled to open at the Tate Britain on Oct. 2. Winners will be announced on Dec. 3.