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Stacks of Planks, Chairs, and Tables by Martin Creed at Fruitmarket Gallery
Martin Creed Work No. 930, 2008. © Martin Creed. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Photo: Mike Bruce.
EDINBURGH.- A major exhibition of new and recent work by Martin Creed, one of Britain’s most highly-regarded and popular artists. Creed’s work captures the public imagination, while also attracting critical acclaim for its generous, accessible approach. His work most often takes the form of interventions into a given space, re-ordering readily available materials which are a familiar part of everyday life. In 2001 he won the Turner Prize with Work No. 227: The Lights Going On and Off, and in 2008 responded to the prestigious Duveen Commission at Tate Britain with the phenomenally popular Work No. 850, in which runners sprinted through the space at 30-second intervals.

Consisting of recent and newly-commissioned work, this exhibition focuses on stacking and progression in size, height and tone – stacks of planks, chairs, tables, boxes, pieces of lego; series of paintings; and works making use of the musical scale. Creed talks about these works in terms of a picture of growth; showing process, progress and things in movement. A highlight of the exhibition is a new commission in which Creed turns the Gallery’s staircase into a synthesiser, with each step sounding a different note on the scale as the audience walks up or down.

The exhibition’s focus on progression – on going up and down steps – gives a context to a new permanent work of public sculpture commissioned by The Fruitmarket Gallery and supported through the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund for Edinburgh Art Festival. Currently in development and part of a comprehensive Edinburgh City Council renovation scheme, this ambitious project is sited on the Scotsman Steps, which link Edinburgh’s old and new towns. Creed plans to resurface the Steps with different and contrasting marbles from all over the world, creating a visually spectacular, beautiful and thoughtful response to this historic artery. Creed describes the new staircase as a microcosm of the whole world – stepping on the different marble steps will be like walking through the world, dramatising Edinburgh’s internationalism and contemporary significance while also recognising and respecting its historical importance.

To coincide with Martin Creed’s exhibition at The Fruitmarket Gallery, Sadler’s Wells and The Fruitmarket Gallery are presenting Martin Creed’s Ballet: Work No. 1020 at the Traverse Theatre as part of the 2010 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. A piece for dancers, live band, art and the artist, this is a funny and thoughtful work by Creed. Based around the five positions in ballet and the notes of the musical scale, the ballet speaks eloquently to the incremental impulses at play in Creed’s work; the ordering and re-ordering of the everyday which gives his work its particular magic.

Fruitmarket Gallery | Martin Creed | Edinburgh |

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