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Turner Prize winner Simon Starling comes to City Gallery

Media release 8 January 2014

Turner Prize winner and star of the international art scene Simon Starling comes to City Gallery

For the New Zealand Festival, City Gallery Wellington is excited to be presenting an exhibition by Turner Prize-winning artist Simon Starling, opening on Friday 21 February. In Speculum is the first survey of the artist’s work in Australasia, and brings together a major new commission alongside key works that explore the relationships between art, technology, history and modernity.

Starling is a British conceptual artist who won the coveted Turner Prize in 2005 with the work Shedboatshed that involved taking a wooden shed, turning it into a boat, sailing it down the Rhine, and turning it back into a shed. His works are always interested in the making process and in the craft of being an artist.

Starling was born in England, studied in Glasgow and is currently based in Copenhagen. Each of his works has an intricate tale to tell and a narrative to uncover. His research-based art is described as obscure, but fascinating - you have to untangle complex backstories knotted up within them.

Unusual journeys have featured within several of his works. He rode a hydrogen-fuelled bicycle across the Spanish desert, and then painted a watercolour using the water it produced. To mark the Transit of Venus, Starling made a film featuring footage he shot on a volcano in Hawaii. He travelled across a Scottish loch in a small steamboat whose boiler was powered by wood chopped from the sides of the vessel, until it sank.

The show comes to Wellington from the Institute of Modern Art in Brisbane. Our incoming Senior Curator Robert Leonard describes Starling’s projects as always having ‘something unexpected, excessive, witty, perverse, serendipitous, convoluted, or crafty about them‘.

Simon Starling is visiting New Zealand and will be giving a free lecture at City Gallery on Friday 21 February at 6pm. In Speculum is a partnership project between Monash University of Art, Melbourne, IMA (Institute of Modern Art), Brisbane and City Gallery Wellington.

Simon Starling: In Speculum 21 February 2014 – 18 May 2014 City Gallery Wellington, Civic Square Free Entry


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