Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA)

Present

Venus Presenting Helen to Paris (with Townley Venus), 2017
Venus Presenting Helen to Paris (with Townley Venus), 2017
Virtual Reality Presentation Courtesy of the artist and Happy Finish London Image courtesy: Happy Finish London

From Life

11th December – 11th March 2018 at The Royal Academy of Arts

From Life

The Royal Academy of Arts presents From Life, a special exhibition project taking place across two distinct spaces: the Sackler Wing of Galleries and the Tennant Gallery. From Life examines what making art from life has meant to artists throughout history and how the practice is evolving as technology opens up new ways of creating and visualising artwork.

Drawing from casts of Classical and Renaissance sculpture and life models was long considered essential training for any aspiring artist, and was once a staple of the RA Schools, Britain’s longest established fine art school. Beginning with a display of historic paintings and works on paper drawn from the RA Collection, From Life explores the practice of life drawing, from the origins of the Royal Academy in the 18th century to the present day, whilst also looking to the future. Historic paintings by artists such as Johann Zoffany are followed by works in a diverse range of media by contemporary artists, including Jeremy Deller’s Iggy Pop Life Class (2016), Cai Guo-Qiang’s film One Thousand Youngsters Drawing David (2010)and Jenny Saville’s Entry (2004).  From Life also presents work by Royal Academicians who continue to interrogate the practice of working from life, among them Antony Gormley, Chantal Joffe, Michael Landy and Gillian Wearing.

For the first time the Royal Academy is working with artists exploring emerging technologies, which presents them with new ways to both observe and represent themselves and the world around them. Farshid Moussavi RA, Humphrey Ocean RA, Yinka Shonibare RA and Jonathan Yeo have experimented with virtual reality technologies, creating new artwork for the exhibition using virtual reality platform HTC Vive and artistic software programmes, including Google's Tilt Brush and MakeVR Pro. Farshid Moussavi’s VR experience transports visitors into masterpieces of ecclesiastical architecture, which they can adapt and transform themselves, while creative technology and content studio Happy Finish have worked with Yinka Shonibare to develop a three-dimensional rendering of a neo-classical painting, featuring a cast of Venus dressed in Shonibare’s trademark batik fabric. Meanwhile, Humphrey Ocean invites audiences to create their own three-dimensional sketches within a playful virtual environment centred on the artist’s fascination with chairs.

From Life reveals the creative process in making these new artworks, as well as opening up the exciting potential of future artistic applications of virtual reality. HTC Vive has supported the development of these works, which will also be available for audiences to experience at home on Viveport, HTC’s global VR app store. Google Arts & Culture is working with artist Jonathan Yeo to create the first physical free-standing sculpture in metal made by using Tilt Brush. The visitors’ experience of the virtual reality element within the exhibition will depend on availability. As each virtual reality artwork can only be experienced individually, access cannot be guaranteed.

Tim Marlow, Artistic Director of the Royal Academy of Arts said: “This is an experimental project that explores everything from artistic process to technological evolution and creative collaboration. In a sense, From Life embodies what an artist-run academy was, is and might become.”

Sky Arts have commissioned immersive content studio Factory 42 to produce a documentary entitled Virtual Reality: Mystery of Creativity, which explores creating art in a virtual environment and how artists use these cutting-edge technologies to explore the limits of traditional artistic methods. There are also a series of short films across the Royal Academy’s online platforms, as well as available via the Sky VR and Google Arts & Culture apps.

250 free life drawing experiences for 250 years: To coincide with From Life and as part of the 250th anniversary celebrations in 2018, the Royal Academy is offering free life drawing classes for 250 people of all abilities in the historic Life Room in the RA Schools. Each class is for a particular group that has a special relationship with either the RA, drawing, or the human body, from members of the Royal Academy’s outreach programmes to nurses and architects. The guest tutors will not be revealed until the life drawing class begins. The project will be documented by online features and videos. 

 

Organisation

From Life is organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London. The exhibition is curated by Adrian Locke, Royal Academy of Arts. 

 

Dates and Opening Hours

Open to public: 11 December 2017 – 11 March 2018

10am – 6pm daily (last admission 5.30pm)

Late night opening:Fridays until 10pm (last admission 9.30pm)

 

Mobility Unlimited Challenge

Toyota Mobility Foundation & Nesta’s Challenge Prize Centre

Toyota Mobility Foundation & Nesta’s Challenge Prize Centre launch a multi-million dollar challenge to expand mobility across the globe for people with lower-limb paralysis. Mobility Unlimited Challenge will reward the development of personal mobility devices incorporating intelligent systems.

The Mobility Unlimited Challenge is seeking teams around the world to create game-changing technology that will help radically improve the mobility and independence of people with paralysis.

The Mobility Unlimited Challenge aims to harness creative thinking from across the world to accelerate innovation and encourage collaboration with users to find winning devices to transform the world for people with lower-limb paralysis. The Challenge will reward the development of personal mobility devices incorporating intelligent systems.

The mobility solutions of the future could include anything from exoskeletons to artificial intelligence and machine learning, from cloud computing to batteries. Around the world, millions of people have lower-limb paralysis (the most common causes being strokes, spinal cord injury and multiple sclerosis). While there are no statistics on paralysis worldwide, the World Health Organization estimates there are 250,000-500,000 new cases of spinal cord injury globally every year.

Innovation in “smarter” mobility technology has the potential to create personal devices that are better integrated with the user’s body and the environment. But the application of this groundbreaking technology is slow due to disincentives such as small and fragmented markets, regulatory burdens, and reimbursement complexities from healthcare systems and insurers. This can make the field unattractive to small or new entrants, and prevent innovative solutions by existing innovators from getting to market. Even though huge advances have been made in improving travel between places, innovation in everyday functionality still lags behind.

The Mobility Unlimited Challenge Prize is supported by a number of ambassadors from around the world, all of whom have experience of living with lower-limb paralysis. Global ambassadors include: Aki Taguchi, Director, Paralympian Association of Japan; August de los Reyes, Head of Design at Pinterest; Indian athlete and campaigner Preethi Srinivasan; Dr Rory A Cooper, director of the Human Engineering Research Laboratories at the University of Pittsburgh; Sandra Khumalo, South African rower; Sophie Morgan, British TV presenter; US track & field athlete Tatyana McFadden; and Yinka Shonibare MBE, Turner-Prize nominated British/Nigerian artist. 

Charlotte Macken of Nesta’s Challenge Prize Centre commented:
“Challenge Prizes are a way to make innovation happen. The Mobility Unlimited Challenge is about the freedom to move. It will support innovators, creating cutting-edge personal mobility devices incorporating smart technology and intelligent systems that will transform people’s lives." A panel of expert judges will pick five finalists who will each receive $500,000 to take their concepts from an intelligent insight to a prototype. The Challenge winner will receive $1,000,000 to make the device available to users- with the winning concept unveiled in Tokyo in 2020.

The Mobility Unlimited Challenge aims to attract and support smaller innovators who might otherwise struggle to break into the assistive technology market. The Discovery Awards will provide seed funding of $50,000 for 10 groups with promising concepts, but who might otherwise lack the resources to enter the Challenge. Interested innovators can apply online at mobilityunlimited.org. Building on universal design principles to create a more equitable environment, entries for the Mobility Unlimited Challenge will be user-centered. The Challenge will be a catalyst for innovation through co-creation with the people around the world who will benefit most from the solutions discovered by our entrants.

At the end of the Mobility Unlimited Challenge, the Toyota Mobility Foundation and Nesta’s Challenge Prize Centre will have supported teams of innovators in creating leading-edge technological solutions, opening a new chapter in personal mobility for people with lower-limb paralysis. 

www.mobilityunlimited.org

 

 

'Mrs Pinckney and the Emancipated Birds of South Carolina' 2017
'Mrs Pinckney and the Emancipated Birds of South Carolina' 2017

Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte, and the Shaping of the Modern World

Kensington Palace: 22 June - 12 November 2017

Specially commissioned new artwork by Yinka Shonibare MBE: Mrs Pinckney and the Emancipated Birds of South Carolina, 2017

Exhibition: Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte, and the Shaping of the Modern World at Yale Center for British Art and Kensington Palace

This exhibition will explore the story of three remarkable German princesses: Caroline of Ansbach, Augusta of Saxe-Gotha, and Charlotte of Mecklenberg-Strelitz, all of whom married into the British royal family in the eighteenth century. Caroline and Charlotte became queens consort to George II and George III respectively; Princess Augusta never achieved this distinction but held the titles of Princess of Wales and Princess Dowager, and was mother to King George III.

Through their wide-ranging intellectual, social, and political interests, Caroline, Augusta, and Charlotte helped to shape court culture and the age in which they lived, and would leave a lasting legacy. They encouraged the greatest philosophers, scientists, artists, and architects of the day; and they brought art, music, dance, enlightened conversation, and experimentation into the palaces and royal gardens, and supported industry, trade, and imperial ambition. The exhibition will include many important works of art and manufacture, which belonged to these women and their families, or were commissioned by them. Works by Hans Holbein, William Kent, Allan Ramsay, Sir Joshua Reynolds, George Stubbs, Thomas Gainsborough, Johan Zoffany, and many more will be on display. Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte, and the Shaping of the Modern World is a collaboration between Historic Royal Palaces and the Yale Center for British Art. It will be on view at the Center in spring 2017 and then at Kensington Palace from June 22 to November 12, 2017. The lead curator is Joanna Marschner, Senior Curator at Historic Royal Palaces, assisted by Samantha Howard, Curatorial Assistant. The organizing curator at the Center is Amy Meyers, Director, who is assisted by Lisa Ford, Assistant Director of Research; Glenn Adamson, Senior Research Associate; and Tyler Griffith, Postdoctoral Research Associate.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication of the same title, a beautifully illustrated catalogue of works edited by Joanna Marschner, with the assistance of David Bindman and Lisa Ford. Co-published with Historic Royal Palaces in association with Yale University Press, the book will feature contributions by an international team of scholars.
 
 
 

 

 

Smithsonian National Museum of African Art

Wind Sculpture VII

Wind Sculpture VII is the first sculpture installed permanently in front of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. This unique, gold-leaf version of Shonibare’s Wind Sculptures series evokes the sails of ships that have crossed the Atlantic and other oceans, connecting nations through the exchange of ideas, products, and people. In its form, it captures histories that can be inspiring or brutal, but always complex. It suggests that the opening of the seas led not only to the slave trade and colonization, but also to the dynamic contributions of Africans and African heritage worldwide. Using yellow, blue, rose, and gold, Shonibare celebrates the African men, women, and children who have shaped the United States, Great Britain, and other nations of today and for the future.

 

 

 

Royal Academy Wrap

Digital print commissioned by Royal Academy of Arts

The Royal Academy of Arts is undergoing a transformative redevelopment by David Chipperfield Architects that will unite Burlington House on Piccadilly with 6 Burlington Gardens to the north. The Royal Academy will be opened as never before, creating a revitalised destination for artists and the public in the very heart of London, completed in time for our 250th anniversary in 2018. Across the site there will be new public areas, displays of our collection and more space for the RA Schools. Burlington Gardens will reopen with newdedicated spaces for exhibitions, new Learning facilities, and a double-height lecture theatre.

Royal Academician Yinka Shonibare MBE will create an art work for the scaffolding wrap which will shroud the façade of Burlington Gardens for the next 2 years while the building work is taking place. It will contribute an important temporary work of art to the neighbo§urhood of Mayfair that celebrates not just the Royal Academy but the importance of art and culture for everyone. 

‘RA Family Album’ brings together over 150 photographs that span the Royal Academy’s 248-year history. The juxtaposition of images reveals the rich tapestry of activity which takes place behind these walls.  From the renowned exhibitions, public debates, artists’ gatherings and stylish social events, to the more private making of art by Schools students and the skilled back of house operation, all give the place its life and vitality. This spread of images is topped by one of Shonibare’s signature colourful fabric designs, in this case of circles, selected as a sign of universal inclusiveness. From historic legacy to future possibilities, the work highlights the Royal Academy as a place for all.

 

 

RA Family Album
RA Family Album
Courtesy of Stephen Friedman Gallery, London and James Cohan Gallery, New York

Yinka Shonibare MBE Nelson's Ship in a Bottle

Nelson's HMS Victory

'Nelson's Ship in a Bottle' originally debuted on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square and is now permantley on display at The Nation Maritime Museum in Greenwich.The work is an incredibly detailed, scaled-down replica of HMS Victory, on which Nelson died during the Battle of Trafalgar on 21 October 1805. It has 80 cannon and 37 sails set as on the day of battle. The fabrics used were inspired by Indonesian batik, mass-produced by Dutch traders and sold in West Africa.

 

Nelsons Ship in  Bottle
Nelsons Ship in Bottle
© 2010 Yinka Shonibare MBE

Yinka Shonibare MBE Wind Sculpture

Commission for Howick Place

Wind Sculpture, a site specific commision, is permanently displayed as part of Howick Place in Victoria, London. Measuring 6 metres by 3 metres, the work explores the notion of harnessing movement, through the idea of capturing and freezing a volume of wind in a moment in time.

 

Wind Sculpture Howick Place
Wind Sculpture Howick Place
© 2014 Yinka Shonibare MBE

To look at previous exhibitions see Press

 
©2017. All images are property of Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA). Original Website by Moira Stevenson. Website Updated and Maintained by Adam Thornton.