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Yorkshire Sculpture Park welcomes an unusual new equestrian resident by Julian Opie
Julian Opie, Galloping Horse, 2012. Photo Jonty Wilde. Courtesy the artist, Yorkshire Sculpture Park & Lisson Gallery.
WAKEFIELD.- For the first time in many years a galloping equestrian guest has taken up residency at Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

Galloping Horse, 2012, the iconic LED sculpture by influential British artist Julian Opie, shows an animated horse running – as if through the historic YSP landscape and among neighbouring sculptures by Anthony Caro, Dennis Oppenheim and Peter Liversidge – atop a monumental brick plinth. With a certain resonance at YSP, the sculpture references the horses that were once stabled on the Bretton Estate.

Opie uses a reductive process of stripping back photographed images of his subject matter – be it people, landscapes or still lives – to the bare minimum, leaving just the few lines that make something unique and recognisable. Galloping Horse uses this process to reinvent the classical equestrian sculptures frequently seen around city centres.

Clare Lilley, YSP’s Director of Programme, said: “Julian Opie is one of the most significant artists of his generation and Galloping Horse is a beautiful work that extends the material of contemporary sculpture, making full use of new technology. It is a pleasure to welcome this exceptional piece to the Park and to see it in a landscape that has been used by horse riders for hundreds of years.”

Born in London in 1958, Opie studied at Goldsmiths College and emerged as an influential figure in the 1980s. His work can be found in many public collections worldwide including Tate; the Arts Council Collection; The National Museum of Art, Osaka; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Julian Opie was born in London in 1958 and lives and works in London. He graduated from Goldsmith’s School of Art, London in 1982.

Solo exhibitions include National Portrait Gallery, London (2011), IVAM, Valencia, Spain (2010), MAK, Vienna (2008), CAC Malaga, Spain (2006), Neues Museum, Nuremburg, Germany (2003), Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, UK (2001), Kunstverein Hannover, Germany (1994) and Institute of Contemporary Arts, London (1985). Major group exhibitions include the Shanghai Biennale (2006), 11th Biennial of Sydney (1998), documenta 8, Kassel, Germany (1987) and XIIème Biennale de Paris (1985).

His public projects include works for hospitals, such as Barts & the London Hospital (2003) and the Lindo Wing, St Mary’s Hospital, London (2012), Heathrow Terminal 1 (1998), the prison Wormwood Scrubs, London (1994) and his design for the band Blur’s album (2000), for which he was awarded the Music Week CADS for Best Illustration in 2001.

Opie’s work is held in many major museum collections including the Arts Council, England; British Museum, London; Carnegie Museum, Pittsburgh; IVAM Museum of Modern Art, New York; MoMAT Tokyo; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; National Portrait Gallery, London; Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, Munich; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Tate Collection, London and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

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