09.09.2011 - 15.01.2012
Room № 108, 109, The New Hermitage
The State Hermitage Museum
“Hermitage 20/21” Project
with the support from the Friends of the Hermitage UK Foundation, White Cube gallery
and the St Petersburg PRO ARTE Foundation
The exhibition, Still Standing: A Contemporary Intervention in the Classical Collection, marks the first time that a living artist has engaged with the Hermitage's classical galleries. Nine ancient statues placed in a loose constellation directly on the ground so that these idealized and sexualized bodies share the same conditions as the viewer. The exhibition is important landmark in the Programme of the rearrangement of the Classical Antiquities Galleries, started in The State Hermitage museum in 1998 and nearly completed.
Seventeen of the artist's solid iron blockworks will be shown in a rigorous orthogonal arrangement in the Small Classical Courtyard or Antichny dvorik, one of the most famous interiors of the museum. Developed over the last two years, these works re-describe the space of the human body using the Euclidean geometry of architecture. Their abstract and severely constructed modernist volumes and rough, oxidised surfaces will be contrasted against the ornate neo-classical architectural surroundings and the idealised bodyforms of the previous room.
Still Standing affords a unique opportunity to experience a new the predetermined context and content of a museum. In dramatically altering the viewer's normal passage through the gallery space and relationship to sculpture the exhibition proposes that what is seen depends more on the engagement of the viewer's own imagination than on museological theory.
Antony Gormley was born in London in 1950. His work has been exhibited extensively throughout the UK, with solo shows at the Whitechapel, Tate, Hayward and the British Museum and internationally at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art (Denmark), Malmo Konsthall (Sweden), Kunsthalle zu Kiel (Germany), National Museum of Modern Chinese History (Beijing), Garage Centre for Contemporary Sculpture (Russia) and Kunsthaus Bregenz (Austria). Increasingly, the artist has taken his practice beyond the gallery, engaging the public in active participation, as in Clay and the Collective Body (Helsinki) and the acclaimed One & Other commission in London's Trafalgar Square. Critically acclaimed permanent works include Angel of the North (Gateshead, UK), Another Place (Crosby Beach, UK), Habitat (Anchorage, United States) and Exposure (Lelystad, The Netherlands).
The PRO ARTE Foundation together with the Hermitage Museum organized the following events to supplement the exhibition:
22 September, 2011 Round Table Discussion “Sculpture in the Museum and Beyond”
24 September, 2011 Antony Gormley “Body in Time and Space” Lecture in the Hermitage Theater
8, 15, 22, 23, 29 October, 2011 Excursions at the Exhibition led by the experts from the Education Department of the Hermitage Museum
PROJECTS WITH THE HERMITAGE