The Liverpool Biennial and Tate Liverpool have announced a new joint project with the internationally acclaimed artist Ugo Rondinone. It will realise the creation of a large-scale outdoor sculpture for a prime site at Royal Albert Dock Liverpool on the city’s waterfront. A planning application has been submitted to Liverpool City Council and should be determined in August.
Part of the Liverpool 2018 programme, the artwork, entitled Liverpool Mountain, celebrates the city’s unique association with contemporary art: 2018 marks the 10th anniversary of Liverpool European Capital of Culture, the 20th anniversary of Liverpool Biennial and the 30th anniversary of Tate Liverpool.
Ugo Rondinone’s work for Liverpool, part of his mountain series, is his first public artwork in the UK. Rondinone’s mountain sculptures rise up to ten metres high. Suggestive both of ancient totems and heroic examples of land art, they consist of rocks stacked vertically, inspired by naturally occurring Hoodoos (spires or pyramids of rock) and the art of meditative rock balancing. Each stone is painted a different fluorescent colour. The works seem to defy gravity in their teetering formations, poised between the natural the artificial and the manmade. The location is in Mermaid Courtyard, next to Tate Liverpool, Royal Albert Dock Liverpool.
This new project takes forward Liverpool’s outstanding tradition of working with world-class artists to create public art for key sites around the City Region.
• Peter Blake’s Everybody Razzle Dazzle (2015), which covers the Mersey Ferry Snowdrop in a distinctive pattern in monochrome and colour, and has now become a much-loved feature of Liverpool’s waterfront life, taking passengers back and forth across the Mersey.
• Jaume Plensa’s Dream (2009) was chosen by a group of ex-miners and commissioned by St. Helens Council. Sited on top of the former Sutton Manor Colliery, Dream stands 20 metres high midway between Liverpool and Manchester.
• Antony Gormley’s Another Place (2005) consisting of 100 cast-iron sculptures that stretch across 3km of Crosby Beach, Merseyside. The piece has become one of the most well-loved and widely recognised public artworks in the UK.
Ugo Rondinone’s Liverpool Mountain is one of a number of events forming part of the Liverpool 2018 programme, which is supported by £5million from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority. Other events in the programme include China Dream, Three Festivals Tall Ships Regatta, the finale of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race and the return of the Giants possible. The project is supported by Royal Albert Dock Liverpool.
Sally Tallant, Director, Liverpool Biennial said: “Following in Liverpool’s great tradition of sculpture in public spaces, I am delighted that Ugo Rondinone, an internationally acclaimed artist, has accepted this major new project. It is a sign of the confidence and creativity of Liverpool as a world city, which is of course home to Liverpool Biennial, the UK’s biggest celebration of contemporary art.”
Kasia Redzisz, Senior Curator, Tate Liverpool, said: “2018 marks 30 years since Tate Liverpool opened and we’re proud to say we’ve welcomed more than 18 million visitors over the last three decades. We play a critical role in the city by bringing outstanding international and British art high to the region and we’re delighted to be working together with Liverpool Biennial, Royal Albert Dock Liverpool and the city to bring this important artist and his work to Liverpool.”
Ugo Rondinone was born in 1964 in Brunnen, Switzerland. He studied at the University of Applied Arts, Vienna and is one of the most noted contemporary artists today, working in a wide range of media. He has exhibited widely including solo shows at Carre d’Art, Nimes; Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam (2016); Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Secession, Vienna (2-15), Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai; Museo Anahuacalli, Mexico (2014), Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago and M Museum, Leuven (2013).
Liverpool Biennial is the UK biennial of contemporary art and commissions artists to make and present work in the context of Liverpool. It takes place every two years across the city in public spaces, galleries, museums and online. The Biennial is underpinned by a programme of research, education, residencies and commissions. Founded in 1998, Liverpool Biennial has commissioned over 300 new artworks and presented work by over 450 artists from around the world. Amongst artists presented in early editions are Doug Aitken, John Akomfrah, Mona Hatoum, Nicholas Hlobo, Yayoi Kusama, Takashi Murakami, Yoko Ono, Philippe Parreno, Ai Weiwei and Franz West. The 10th edition Beautiful world where are you? runs from 14 July – 28 October and celebrates 20 years of presenting international art in the City Region.
Photos P C Robinson © Artlyst 2018