Tonight, the nation's attention will be temporarily fixed on modern art as the winner of our most famous art prize, the Turner, is announced.

So often a cause for eye-rolling from the public and art critics alike, this year the Turner is being contested by Paul Noble, who draws cities occupied by human excrement, a performance artist who changed her name to Spartacus and two very talented video artists called Luke Fowler and Elizabeth Price, neither of whom have proved quite so useful for producing headlines.

In actual fact it's a great year for the quality of the art on display as our review contented - but let's be honest, while many of the Turner's hopefuls go on to be celebrated artists, the prize its self is best remembered for its controversies.

To mark tonight's event, here's 11 of them that you might have forgotten about - from Banksy joining forces with a porn star in 2002 to Tracey Emin getting a tiny bit tipsy in 1997...

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  • "Is it all a fix?" Judge Lynn Barber raised her concerns about the fairness of the judging system in 2006 and many were insulted by suggestions that the public vote was not being properly taken into account. Stuckist protestors soon took up the chant, much to Barber's annoyance. IMAGE: Wikimedia

  • In 1997 a drunk Tracey Emin walked out of a live Channel 4 discussion programme about the award. She claims to have no memory of the event and later described her shock at reading about her behaviour in next day's paper. IMAGE: Wikimedia

  • When Fiona Banner's wall-sized description of a porn film, <em>Arsewoman in Wonderland</em>, was nominated in 2002 it sparked comment from some unlikely quarters. Renowned porn star Ben Dover and Prince Charles joined in the chorus and graffiti artist Banksy stencilled "mind the crap" on the steps of the Tate. IMAGE: Johnny Green/PA

  • It seems the Tate's steps love a bit of the limelight. When artist Chris Ofili used balls of elephant dung as part of his mixed-media prize-winning piece, one angry protester made his views clear by heaping dung on the gallery steps. IMAGE: Matthew Fearn/PA

  • Despite attracting a lot of attention, Tracey Emin's rumpled bed, complete with used condoms and stained underwear, failed to win the 1999 prize. However, it did inspire two young artists to stage a performance piece,<em> Two Naked Men Jump Into Tracey's Bed</em>. Pretty self-explanatory. IMAGE: PA

  • The early nineties may have seen Damien Hirst catapulted into the public eye, but it wasn't due to Turner Prize success. Although he remains the standout nominee of the 1992 prize - with his famous <em>The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living</em> (a shark in formaldehyde) - he didn't actually with the prize till 1995. IMAGE: Matt Crossick/EMPICS Entertainment/ PA

  • In 1986 Gilbert and George became the first artists to win with pieces that were not paintings. Their photomontage <em>Drunk with God</em> bagged them the prize. IMAGE: Fiona Hanson/PA

  • 2007 was the first year in Turner Prize history that it was held outside London, with Tate Liverpool hosting the prize. That year, Mark Wallinger won with <em>Sleeper</em>, a film of him walking round a museum dressed in a bear costume. IMAGE: Peter Byrne/PA

  • In 2001 guest of honour Madonna got in trouble when she swore live on air while awarding the prize to Martin Creed. It was before the 9pm watershed and Channel 4 was given an official rebuke by the Independent Television Commission. IMAGE: PA

  • In 1993 the maverick K Foundation attracted media attention when they announced the award of the Anti-Turner Prize, £40,000 to be given to Britain's worst artist, chosen from the actual Turner Prize short-list. They awarded it to Rachel Whiteread. Expensive whim? Not compared with next year's antics - a film of them burning a million quid. IMAGE: Wikimedia

  • Last year's show became the most visited Turner Prize exhibition ever. The prize left London for the second time, being held in Gateshead at the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art. Though one fan, looking pretty in pink, got a little too excited... IMAGE: Scott Heppell/ PA