The reopening of the Ferens Art Gallery following a £4.5 million facelift, the Turner Prize, an exhibition of Francis Bacon’s Screaming Popes, Spencer Tunick’s nudes, works by Michelangelo, Rembrandt and Matisse from the British Museum, a brand new contemporary art space, Humber Street Gallery, and an Open Exhibition showcasing the work of local artists which will be judged by the director of London’s National Gallery and Hull-born actor Maureen Lipman are among the visual arts highlights announced today as part of the programme for Hull City of Culture which will run from 1 January to 31 December 2017.
The Ferens Art Gallery will reopen in January 2017 with the complete redisplay of the gallery’s outstanding permanent collection, which includes works by Frans Hals, Canaletto,Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth and Mark Wallinger. A special highlight will be the unveiling of an outstanding new acquisition, Pietro Lorenzetti’s Christ Between Saints Paul and Peter (c.1320), which will be revealed for the first time following four years of extensive conservation and research at the National Gallery, London. The painting is the only fully autographed work by Lorenzetti in a UK collection and was saved for the nation after being acquired by the Ferens Endowment Fund, with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Art Fund. Throughout the year, the collection at the Ferens will be augmented by a number of rare and exceptional loans including two masterpieces: Manet’s study for Le Déjeuner sur l’Herbe from The Courtauld Gallery and Rembrandt’s The Shipbuilder and his Wife from the Royal Collection, both paintings agreed as part of longer-term national partnerships.
Also at the Ferens will be an exhibition of works by the internationally acclaimed sculptor,Ron Mueck as part of the ARTIST ROOMS On Tour programme (22 April -13 August), and the first showing of Spencer Tunick’s photographs from his 2016 Sea of Hull commission featuring thousands of nudes with the city as a backdrop. The Open Exhibition, founded in 1967, which showcases the creativity of local artists, celebrates its fiftieth anniversary in 2017. Judges of this special edition include Dr Gabriel Finaldi, Director, London’s National Gallery, Hull-born actress, Maureen Lipman and the leading sculptor David Mach (20 January – 12 March). The gallery will also present a fascinating display including five ofFrancis Bacon’s ‘Screaming Popes’ (21 January – 1 May).
In association with Tate, the world-renowned Turner Prize 2017 will be presented in Hull at the Ferens, the fifth location outside London to host Europe’s most prestigious contemporary art prize since it was established in 1984.
The Humber Street Gallery, a brand new contemporary art space for the city showcasing the best contemporary art, will open in January 2017 in the heart of the city’s Fruit Market cultural quarter. From 3 February – 22 March, it will host the first major show to explore the work and legacy of COUM Transmissions, which was founded in Hull by artists Genesis P-Orridge and Cosey Fanni Tutti, a subversive collective that took the art world by storm in the late 1960s, ahead of their later involvement in the musical collective Throbbing Gristle. Featuring materials drawn from their personal archives, and curated by Hull-born Cosey Fanni Tutti herself, this first retrospective will also feature musical performances, programmed by respected music website The Quietus, and three works by acclaimed artist Sarah Lucas.
Look Up is a year-long programme of newly commissioned works by artists made specifically for Hull’s public spaces, designed to challenge people’s perceptions of the city.Look up is created in partnership with a range of organisations, including The Deep, GF Smith and the RIBA. Commissioned artists include Michael Pinsky, Nayan Kulkarni,Claire Barber, Bob and Roberta Smith, Sarah Barber, Claire Morgan and Tania Kovats(1 January – 31 December).
Nayan Kulkarni has been commissioned by Hull City Council to create a series of light installations across the city centre in 2017. The council has also commissioned The City Speaks, a series of installations by artist Michael Pinsky, award-winning architects Tonkin Liu and Hull poet Shane Rhodes, which invite people to contemplate their surroundings and what it means to be made in Hull.
The Brynmor Jones Library at the University of Hull will host the exhibition, Lines of Thought – Drawing from Michelangelo to Now which features extraordinary drawings from the British Museum’s collection, including works by Dürer, Michelangelo, Rembrandt,Matisse and Degas. Arguably the greatest exhibition of its kind ever presented in the city, the UK tour is generously supported by the Bridget Riley Art Foundation (3 January – 28 February).