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Aquatopia – The imaginary of the ocean deep

— July 2013

Associated media

Ashley Bickerton, Orange Shark (2008)

Nottingham Contemporary, 20 July - 22 September 2013

Nottingham Contemporary presents 'Aquatopia', a major exhibition of Contemporary and historic art about how the ocean depths have been imagined across cultures and through time. The exhibition and the accompanying book reveal how human societies have projected their sexual desires, their will to power, and their fear of difference and mortality onto the often mysterious and weird life-forms the ocean sustains. The ocean deep, in this exhibition, is a dream-state. Its mythologies also represent far-reaching historical processes.

Curated by Alex Farquharson, Director of Nottingham Contemporary, the exhibition of over 200 artworks, shown with aquatic artefacts, inhabit galleries that evoke the light and atmosphere of the ocean.

Presented in collaboration with Tate St Ives, it will be shown there from October 2013 to January 2014, where Farquharson will ‘re-curate’ it with Martin Clark, Tate St Ives' Artistic Director. The exhibition has been supported by loans from museums and private collectors, including Tate, Victoria & Albert Museum and National Maritime Museum. Each has lent a large number of artworks and objects from their outstanding collections.

Featuring Carol Bove, Marcel Broodthaers, Spartacus Chetwynd, Steve Claydon, JMW Turner, Alan Davie, Mark Dion, Gustav Dore, Utagawa Kuniyoshi, Shimabuku, Oskar Kokoshka, Sean Landers, Jean Painleve, Odilon Redon, Germaine Richier, Edward Wadsworth, Lucian Freud, Katsushika Hokusai, Ellen Gallagher & Edgar Cleijne, The Otolith Group, Ana Mendieta, Wangechi Mutu, Guy Ben-Ner, John Bellany, Barbara Hepworth,  Juergen Teller, Herbert James Draper, Bernard Buffet, Mikhail Karikis, Jennifer West, Dorothy Cross, Salvador Dali, Vidya Gastaldon/Jean-Michel Wicker, Francis Danby, Christian Holstad, George Wallace Jardine, Ant Farm, Simon Starling, Frantz Zephirin, Madsen Mompremier, William Lionel Whyllie, Ashley Bickerton, Hannah Wilke, Alex Bag & Ethan Kramer, and others.

For further information on the exhibition please see the website.

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