At 63, the Tanzanian-born artist is the oldest of this year's nominees.
The annual award for contemporary art was presented to Himid by electronic music star Goldie, in a televised ceremony held in Hull Minster church in the north eastern city of Hull.
The victor is Lubaina Himid, an artist, and art teacher born in Zanzibar, Tanzania, 63 years ago, whose colorful paintings stand out for treating racism and the legacies of slavery. The other short-listed nominees were Rosalind Nashashibi, Hurvin Anderson, and Andrea Büttner. A further £5,000 was awarded to each of the other three shortlisted artists.
The members of the Turner Prize 2017 jury are Dan Fox, writer and co-editor of Frieze; Martin Herbert, art critic; Mason Leaver-Yap, Walker Art Center's Bentson Scholar of Moving Image and Associate Curator at KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin; and Emily Pethick, Director of Showroom.
The works of all four shortlisted artists are on display at Ferens Art Gallery in Hull, the former industrial city which is now a City of Culture.
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Alex Farquharson, director of Tate Britain and chair of the jury, said he believed Himid's selection vindicated the decision to lift the restriction on artists over 50 being nominated. She is now based in Preston, England; her work primarily addresses racial politics and the representation of black people in art. While best known as a filmmaker, she's also known as painter, her most popular piece being 2015's "Electrical Gaza".
Himid has consistently foregrounded the contribution of African diaspora to Western culture.
"Now that its reputation is so firmly established, we want to acknowledge the fact that artists can experience a breakthrough in their work at any age". Working across painting, installation, drawing and printmaking, and bringing both old and new work together, her work is both visually arresting and critical. Her works exhibited in Hull date from the 80s until today and showcase her talent across a wide range of mediums, with works done in newspaper, paintings and wooden sculptures.
For her solo exhibition On This Island at The University Art Galleries at UC Irvine's Claire Trevor School of the Arts in California, and her participation in Documenta 14.