Archives 2nd of 2013
© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2013. All Rights Reserved
It occupies seven-
Exhibition July 20 -
Aquatopia is a major exhibition of contemporary and historic art and artefacts that explores how the ocean deep has been imagined across cultures and through time to the present day. The exhibition and the accompanying book reveal how human cultures have projected their sexual desires, their will to power, and their fear of difference and death onto the ocean's invisible depths and the life-
Aquatopia's utopic and dystopic depths are inhabited by ancient monsters and sirens, shipwrecks and submersibles, militarised gill-
Contemporary artists include Christian Holstad, Mark Dion, Spartacus Chetwynd, Juergen Teller, The Otolith Group, Shimabuku, Mikhail Karikis, Simon Starling, Sean Landers, Mati Diop and Wangechi Mutu. Scrimshaw (sperm whale teeth carved by sailors), antique diving equipment, elaborately carved shells and coral, and the glass models of marine species of Rudolf & Leopold Blaschka are amongst the artefacts also featuring.
The Otolith Group, Hydra Decapita (still), 2010. Film. Courtesy of The Otolith Group.
The exhibition is curated by Alex Farquharson, Director of Nottingham Contemporary, in dialogue with Martin Clark, Artistic Director, Tate St Ives. It travels to Tate St Ives in October, and is a partnership between landlocked Nottingham Contemporary and oceanic Tate St Ives. It features over 150 loans from a great many museums and private collections, in particular Tate, Victoria & Albert Museum and National Maritime Museum.
Aquatopia has strong links with powerful literary archetypes: The Odyssey, The Tempest, The Ancient Mariner, Moby Dick and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and the more recent writings of Derek Walcott, China Miéville, HP Lovecraft, Philip Hoare, Marina Warner, David Toop, Celeste Olalquiaga, Kodwo Eshun and Marcus Rediker. The catalogue will include an anthology of new and republished subaquatic texts by these and other writers.