LONDON.- The British Art Show is widely recognised as the most ambitious and influential exhibition of contemporary British art. Organised by Hayward Touring Exhibitions, it takes place every five years and tours to four different cities across the UK. Now in its seventh incarnation the British Art Show opens in Nottingham, and tours for the first time in 20 years to the Hayward Gallery, followed by venues in Glasgow and Plymouth. It is curated by Lisa Le Feuvre and Tom Morton.
The 39 selected artists have been chosen on the grounds of their significant contribution to contemporary art in the last five years. All artworks included have been produced since 2005 and encompass sculpture, painting, installation, drawing, photography, film, video and performance, with many artists creating new works especially for the exhibition. British Art Show 7 will mark a change in direction from previous years, moving away from the model of a survey show to an exhibition with a marked curatorial focus.
Subtitled In the Days of the Comet, British Art Show 7 employs the motif of the comet to explore and draw together a set of concerns that thread their way through the practices of the selected artists. Here the comet alludes to the measuring of time, to historical recurrence, and to parallel worlds. Comets are also commonly understood as harbingers of change, and fittingly the exhibition will evolve as it moves from city to city, revealing new works at different venues, creating a unique exhibition in each host city.
The artists in British Art Show 7 are:
Charles Avery Karla Black Becky Beasley Juliette Blightman Duncan Campbell Varda Caivano Spartacus Chetwynd Steven Claydon Cullinan Richards Matthew Darbyshire Milena Dragicevic Luke Fowler Michael Fullerton Alasdair Gray Brian Griffiths Roger Hiorns Ian Kiaer Anja Kirschner & David Panos Sarah Lucas Christian Marclay Simon Martin Nathaniel Mellors Haroon Mirza David Noonan The Otolith Group Mick Peter Gail Pickering Olivia Plender Elizabeth Price Karin Ruggaber Edgar Schmitz Maaike Schoorel George Shaw Wolfgang Tillmans Sue Tompkins Phoebe Unwin Tris Vonna-Michell Emily Wardill Keith Wilson
Ralph Rugoff, Director of the Hayward Gallery said: The British Art Show has always been at the forefront of innovation, and this incarnation is no exception. The curatorial premise of the British Art Show 7 allows visitors the chance to discover younger artists, and also re-evaluate and reconnect with artists whose work they thought they were familiar with, but whose new developments hold many surprises.
Curators Lisa Le Feuvre and Tom Morton said: Our subtitle is taken from HG Wells 1906 science fiction novel In the Days of the Comet. The story charts the appearance of a comet over the United Kingdom that releases a green gas creating a great change in all mankind, turning it away from war and exploitation towards rationalism and a heightened appreciation of beauty. We are interested in the recurrent nature of the comet as a symbol of how each version of the present collides with the past and the future and the work of the artists in British Art Show 7, in many different ways, contest assumptions of how the now might be understood.
VENUES AND DATES
NOTTINGHAM: Nottingham Contemporary; Nottingham Castle Museum; New Art Exchange
23 October 2010 - 9 January 2011
LONDON: Hayward Gallery
14 February - 1 May (dates tbc)
GLASGOW: Centre for Contemporary Art; Gallery of Modern Art; Tramway
28 May - 21 August
PLYMOUTH: Peninsula Arts; Plymouth College of Art; Plymouth Arts Centre; Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery; Royal William Yard
17 September 4 Dec (dates tbc)