A film artwork based in a Liverpool housing estate by the influential contemporary artist Marcus Coates goes on display for the first time in the city at the Walker Art Gallery
from 1 August 2010 to early 2011.
"Journey to the Lower World", a major piece of work by Coates, was purchased by the gallery with the help of the Contemporary Art Societys Acquisitions Scheme. The film is an exciting addition to the gallerys internationally renowned collection.
The work arose from "Further Up in the Air", a residency programme for artists in Liverpools Sheil Park estate in 2003. In the film residents from Linosa Close, a tower block awaiting demolition, watch with a mixture of anxiety, faith and good humour as Coates performs a shamanic ritual. Dressed in a deer skin and uttering eerie, animalistic grunts, he attempts to answer the emotive question put to him by his audience: Do we have a protector for this site? What is it?
Head of fine art, Ann Bukantas says: "Journey to the Lower World" is a touching, funny and fascinating film. We are delighted that a key work by an artist of the calibre and originality of Marcus Coates is joining the Walkers collection. We are grateful to the Contemporary Art Societys Acquisitions Scheme for making it possible
"Journey to the Lower World" will be on display at the Walker Art Gallery during the Liverpool Biennial (17 Sept to 28 November 2010).
Marcus Coates (b.1968, London) graduated in 1990 with a BA (Hons) Degree in Fine Art from Kent Institute of Art and Design, (UK) and in 1993 gained a Post Graduate Diploma at the Royal Academy of Art, (London, UK). His work explores how we perceive human nature. An extensive knowledge and understanding of British wildlife has led him to create interpretations of the natural world and its evolving relationship with society. An aspect of Coates' recent work sees him as a useful social agent or problem solver.
He has performed consultations with a variety of clients: Ikebukuru Council, Tokyo, Japan, the Mayor of Holon in Israel, a residents housing association in Liverpool and the City Council of Stavanger in Norway. Their problems have ranged from illegal cycle parking, prostitution and the Israeli/Palestinian crisis. Coates videos, performances and installations have been shown internationally.