Private Utopia: Contemporary Art from the British Council Collection explores more than 80 artworks by 28 British artists who came into prominence from the 1990s onwards, including emerging artists of the present. Covering a striking array of themes, ideas and materials, the selection of works reflect the multifarious nature of contemporary art in the UK today, and the broadening definition of what art can be.
The range of work presented demonstrates a wide array of themes, ideas and materials as well as crossovers into music, social history and anthropology, reflecting the varied nature of contemporary art in the UK today and the broadening definition of what art can be.
Private Utopia shows the work of artists who came to prominence in the mid-1990s such as Jake and Dinos Chapman, Sarah Lucas and Cornelia Parker alongside work by a younger generation of artists such as Marcus Coates and Laura Lancaster.
Whilst not seeking to categorise trends in contemporary British art the exhibition is constructed around five threads running through the artists’ practices: storytelling and narrative, humour and the uncanny in the everyday, real and imagined landscapes, identity and society, and the appropriation of styles, subjects and ready-made materials.
The exhibition is the culmination of a joint project between the British Council and four Japanese galleries. Together the curators of each institution have selected works from the holdings of the British Council Collection, one of the most significant collections of modern and contemporary British art. The Dunedin Public Art Gallery is the only Australasian institution for this highly anticipated 20-year snapshot of contemporary British art.
Includes works by Grayson Perry, Sarah Lucas, David Shrigley, Cornelia Parker, Tracey Emin, Martin Creed and Elizabeth Price.
This touring exhibition has been created by the British Council in partnership with the Asahi Shimbun, Tokyo Station Gallery, Itami City Museum of Art, the Museum of Art, Kochi and Okayama Prefectural Museum of Art. Together, the curators of each museum have selected works from the holdings of the British Council Collection, one of the most comprehensive collections of modern and contemporary British art in the world.