On 18 April, Leeds Art Gallery is launching an Art Happens crowdfunding campaign with artist Lothar Götz to produce one of the most ambitious commissions of his career to date. The initiative hopes to raise £17,000 in 30 days to realise the immersive site-specific project, which has been conceived by the artist for the gallery’s striking original Victorian staircase dating from 1888, when Leeds Art Gallery first opened to the public.
Lothar Götz is a celebrated artist known for creating large-scale, colourful murals, and has lived and worked in the UK for over 20 years. If the campaign to create his proposal reaches its target, the money raised will allow visitors to see the gallery in a new light when the building reopens to the public on 13 October 2017. Götz’s striking wall painting will link the upper and lower galleries, drawing the viewer up the stairs to the new light-filled renovated galleries above. Made with vibrant colours, the contemporary abstract painting will be seen alongside the gallery’s classic original Victorian architecture. The ambitions commission will bridge the old and the new; highlighting how they work alongside each other.
Götz’s artistic practice exists between architecture, sculpture and painting, and this proposal links to Leeds Art Gallery’s dedication to supporting artists and collecting art of our time. The commission will be creating something unique for the historic building that all visitors can enjoy.
Supporters of the crowdfunding campaign will receive a special thank you for their generosity. The campaign’s unique rewards include a boldly-coloured cup and saucer designed by the artist; afternoon tea in the gallery’s impressive Tiled Hall Café; a ‘behind the scenes’ preview of the work before it is unveiled; and a framed limited-edition print by Götz. In addition, supporters of the campaign will have contributed to making this exceptional commission possible – an installation that will transform the space and become a stunning centrepiece of the gallery.
Lothar Götz, artist, said:
“Staircases provide the veins of a building, immersing the visitor spatially in a different way to that of the traditional gallery space. I am interested in how an artwork can be experienced by one’s whole body, the image changing constantly as one moves up or down the stairs. I want to turn the staircase of Leeds Art Gallery into a colourful contemporary artwork, juxtaposed with its Victorian architecture.”
Sarah Brown, Principal Keeper, Leeds Art Gallery said:
“Our commission with Lothar Götz will transform the heart of Leeds Art Gallery creating a unique and stunning work that will have a dramatic impact on visitors’ experience of the gallery when we re-open in October.”
The project can be supported at: https://www.artfund.org/leeds-art-gallery
Twitter: @LeedsArtGallery #ReimagineLAG
ABOUT LEEDS ART GALLERY
Leeds Art Gallery, The Headrow, Leeds, LS1 3AA. www.leeds.gov.uk/artgallery / 0113 247 8256
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Founded in 1888, Leeds Art Gallery has designated collections of 19th and 20th century British painting and sculpture widely considered to be the best outside the national collections. The collection represents the work of early 20th century artists such as Walter Sickert and Stanley Spencer, with the development of English modernism shown through key works by Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson, Paul Nash, Jacob Epstein and Francis Bacon.
The gallery is a renowned centre for modern and contemporary art with an exhibition programme that has showcased work of celebrated artists such as Damien Hirst from the ARTIST ROOMS collection through strategic partnership projects with the National Galleries of Scotland and Tate, in addition to curating major exhibitions together with Tate (Henry Moore and Terry Frost) and in partnership with the Arts Council Collection. Leeds Art Gallery has established a strong reputation for initiating, commissioning and curating solo exhibitions by significant artists attracting national and international attention.
ABOUT ART FUND
Art Fund is the national fundraising charity for art. In the past five years alone Art Fund has given £34 million to help museums and galleries acquire works of art for their collections. It also helps museums share their collections with wider audiences by supporting a range of tours and exhibitions, and makes additional grants to support the training and professional development of curators. Art Fund is independently funded, with the core of its income provided by 123,000 members who receive the National Art Pass and enjoy free entry to over 240 museums, galleries and historic places across the UK, as well as 50% off entry to major exhibitions and subscription to Art Quarterly magazine. In addition to grant-giving, Art Fund’s support for museums includes Art Fund Museum of the Year (won by the V&A, London, in 2016) and a range of digital platforms.
Find out more about Art Fund and the National Art Pass at www.artfund.org
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