Gillian Wearing RA
GSK Contemporary - Aware: Art Fashion Identity focuses on how artists and a number of designers examine clothing as a mechanism to communicate and reveal elements of our identity. The exhibition contains work by over 30 international contemporary artists and designers, including some newly commissioned work.
The Royal Academy of Arts will present GSK Contemporary 2010, the
third season of contemporary art at 6 Burlington Gardens. GSK
Contemporary – Aware: Art Fashion Identity will focus on how artists
and a number of designers examine clothing as a mechanism to
communicate and reveal elements of our identity. The exhibition will
contain work by over 30 international contemporary artists and
designers, including some newly commissioned work, and will
occupy the main galleries of the Royal Academy’s 6 Burlington
Aware will reflect upon the relationship between our physical covering and constructed personal environments, our individual and social identities and the contexts in which we live. The exhibition will look at the role of clothing in cultural and personal stories through the work of Helen Storey, Marie-Ange Guilleminot, and Claudia Losi. Issues of belonging and nationality, displacement and political and social confrontation will be addressed in the work of Yinka Shonibare, Sharif Waked, Alicia Framis, Meschac Gaba, Dai Rees and Acconci Studio (Vito Acconci, Dario Nunez, Eduardo Marques, Garrett Ricciardi).
The importance of performance in the presentation of fashion and clothing, and in highlighting the roles that we play in our daily life, will be explored through the work of Hussein Chalayan, Gillian Wearing RA and Andreas Gursky, amongst others. As a mechanism of expression, the exploration of the role of clothing has been at the heart of the artistic practice of a number of contemporary artists, and has particular resonance for those attuned to the social situations of their times. Whilst frequently fulfilling a practical and occasionally protective function, clothing can be effective in celebrating or suppressing identity and in indicating allegiances. It has the ability to express our way of life and even our unconscious, communicating our positions, aspirations and desires.
The foundations of the exhibition are set through a select number of works from key artists of the late 1960’s, when art and fashion first established meeting points as well as a new connection with society. These artists continue to be a point of reference for a new generation of contemporary artists and designers whose engagement in questioning cultural, geographical, political and social identity through their work forms the body of this exhibition.
“The Royal Academy of Arts is delighted to be working with GlaxoSmithKline again on bringing contemporary art to Burlington Gardens. This is the first time we have held a major exhibition on how contemporary artists and designers have turned to clothing as a medium to explore issues beyond fashion such as identity, nationality, displacement and conflict."
Charles Saumarez Smith, Secretary & Chief Executive, Royal Academy of Arts
“The continued success of the partnership between GSK and the Royal Academy is testament to the creativity and innovation behind the exhibitions. As a company we are committed to transforming lives whilst balancing the demands of our employees, shareholders and the wider society in which we operate and serve. Contributing to the arts remains an integral part of this effort and we look forward to a stimulating and engaging third season of GSK Contemporary.”
Katie Pinnock, Director UK Corporate Contributions, GlaxoSmithKline
The London College of Fashion is a partner in the development of the project and, in addition, is supporting two commissions, a symposium and a curated programme of discussions that will be hosted within the exhibition. The concept for the exhibition was developed by the independent curator Gabi Scardi with artist Lucy Orta, and the exhibition is co- curated by Kathleen Soriano and Edith Devaney, from the Royal Academy.
As part of its support of the Royal Academy of Arts, and its work with contemporary artists, GlaxoSmithKline are sponsoring a programme of exhibitions at the Royal Academy’s galleries in 6 Burlington Gardens – GSK Contemporary.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical and healthcare companies and is committed to improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer. In 2009, GlaxoSmithKline’s community investment was £163 million and targeted health and education programmes in almost 100 countries. GlaxoSmithKline is one of the largest charitable givers in the FTSE 100 and has a long history of supporting art initiatives that encourage creative thinking
For more information please visit: www.gsk.com/community
Image: Gillian Wearing RA, 'Sixty Minute Silence', 1996.
GSK Contemporary Press Enquiries
Calum Sutton PR
T: +44 (0)207 183 3577
Royal Academy of Arts Press Enquiries
Royal Academy of Arts
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Royal Academy's 6 Burlington Gardens
Burlington House Piccadilly - London
Open to public: 10am – 6pm daily (last admission 5.30pm)
Closed 24, 25 and 26 December 2010
Late night openings: Fridays until 10pm (last admission 9.30pm)
(31 December 2010, 10am – 6pm)
ADMISSION £7 full price; £6 Registered Disabled and 60 + years; £5 NUS / ISIC
cardholders; £4 12–18 years and Income Support; £3 8–11 years; 7
and under free. Family Ticket: £16