New Acquisitions 2011-2021 exhibition at City Art Gallery

18 Sep 2021

From 24 September, Southampton City Art Gallery will stage New Acquisitions 2011-21: Narrative, Figure and Place, an exhibition looking at three prominent themes in the last ten years of the gallery’s collecting.

2021 marks a decade since the centenary of our founding bequest, made by Councillor Robert Chipperfield in 1911. The show follows Creating a National Collection, a celebration of our twentieth century establishment as one of the leading regional collections in the country. New Acquisitions 2011-21: Narrative, Figure and Place presents radical new additions to the city’s holdings alongside work building on our long-standing strengths and heritage of art in the city.

The exhibition brings together painting, drawing, print, photography, textiles, video, software, performance, and sculpture. It spans purchases, commissions, and donations from visionary collectors. Visitors can enjoy work by some of the leading figures in British art including Rosalind Nashashibi, Phoebe Cummings, Kelly Richardson and Alison Turnbull as well those who have helped shape the major movements of the twentieth century such as Duncan Grant, Graham Sutherland and Henry Moore. The richness of the city’s cultural scene shines through in work on local themes or by local artists including that of Greg Gilbert, Clare Woods and Bouke De Vries.

Art works respond to their own time, but their meanings change as they reach new audiences. In conceiving the show, the gallery has reckoned with two time periods; that of the works’ production and this past decade in which they have been acquired. By drawing on texts written since 2011 from a range of disciplines, the display opens discussions about how they resonate in our own moment. The themes of narrative, figure, and place carry both contemporary relevance and are applicable to much of the art acquired by Southampton City Art Gallery in the last ten years.

Councillor Spiros Vassiliou, Cabinet Member for Communities, Culture & Heritage, Southampton City Council said: “This fantastic exhibition highlights the amazing art collection held in Southampton and how it continues to grow and develop with fantastic and diverse new artworks. We hope residents and visitors alike can come and enjoy this exhibition as we celebrate 110 years of incredible art in Southampton.”

New Acquisitions 2011-21: Narrative, Figure and Place will run from 24 September 2021 – 22 January 2022 and is free to enter. During the run of the show, Southampton City Art Gallery’s social media channels will post content sharing in depth stories on the works on display.

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