04 September 2012 - 31 August
Over the past 45 years, Italian artist Giuseppe Penone has examined our relationship to nature. For the latest Bloomberg Commission, he has created a twelve metre bronze cast of a tree, with a radiant gold-leaf interior, which spreads across the columned gallery.
In 1969 Giuseppe Penone (b. 1947) covered a tree in a thin layer of wax calling this seemingly simple, yet complex reflection on the passing of time All the Years of the tree plus one. He now recalls this poetic action by casting a layer of wax in bronze to spectacular result.
At first sight Spazio di Luce (Space of Light), could easily be mistaken for the straightforward life-size cast of a large larch tree. However, where once there was a tree now there is a void. The inside of the cast replicates in minute detail the tree’s bark while the finger prints on the outside safeguard the memory of the many hands involved in the sculpture’s making. The gleaming gold inside the tree pays tribute to the life-giving forces of light.
At the same time, the fusion of bark and hand prints alludes to the inseparable bond between humankind and nature. Penone was part of the legendary group of Arte Povera, which called for a radical rethink of society through making works directly appealing to the senses and challenging common conventions of artmaking.
The installation is accompanied by a year-long programme of talks and events exploring the rich relationship between nature and the city.
The Bloomberg Commission invites an international artist to create an annual site-specific artwork inspired by the rich history of the former library. Bloomberg’s support reflects its commitment to innovation, and its ongoing efforts to expand access to art, science and the humanities.
Additional support provided by the Wingate Scholarships.
Images: The Bloomberg Commission: Giuseppe Penone, Whitechapel Gallery, Installation View. Photo: David Parry / PA Wire
30 August 2009 - 30 April 2018
Throughout the Gallery works of art offer a space for contemplation, discussion or just sitting down.
Christian Boltanski, known for his meticulous archival reconstructions, has created Vie Impossible Whitechapel (2006) — a noticeboard assembling photos, letters and ephemera evoking the time of his 1990 Whitechapel Gallery show.
Janet Cardiff’s Artangel audio walk, The Missing Voice: Case Study B (1999), guides visitors on a physical and psychological journey through the streets of Spitalfields.
Liam Gillick, who engages with the semiotics of architecture and design, uses a spectrum of Kvadrat fabrics in his seating project, Prototype Conference Room (2002/09) for the Zilkha Auditorium. Adjustment Filter (2009) in the Café/Bar includes a joke featuring God, Stanley Kubrick and a bicycle; and a maze-like mural on the ceiling.
Rodney Graham’s copper and steel working Weathervane(2008) is permanently installed on the Gallery roof. It depicts the artist as the sixteenth century scholar, Erasmus, seated backwards on a horse while reading The Praise of Folly.
Annie Ratti, a self-confessed ‘waterphile’, presents a drinking fountain, which exposes the science of water filtration; and offers a moment of privacy with her Tête à Tête chair.
Tobias Rehberger’s multi-coloured acrylic columns of light provide at once a source of beauty and illumination.
Franz West’s Diwan or couch, invites visitors to take a rest, have a conversation, indulge in Freudian introspection and become part of the work of art.
09 March - 01 September
In 1951 a colourful and vibrant exhibition of popular art opened at the Whitechapel Gallery as part of the Festival of Britain. A talking lemon, an edible model of St Paul’s Cathedral, a fireplace in the shape of a dog and a life-size wax model of a Rabbi, were amongst a plethora of other extraordinary objects on display.
Entitled Black Eyes and Lemonade, after a Thomas Moore poemIntercepted Letters or The Two-Penny Post Bag (1813), it presented everyday objects made in Britain, normally excluded from museums and art galleries.
The 1951 exhibition was organised by artist, designer and writer Barbara Jones. It was divided in categories such as Home, Birth-Marriage-Death, Man’s Own Image and Commerce & Industry, reflecting Jones’s ideas on popular art and museum culture, questioning the cultural values attached to handmade and machine made objects.
This archive exhibition includes original exhibits, the iconic Airedale fireplace among them. Unseen archive material from the Design Archives, the Vogue Archives and the Whitechapel Gallery Archive, as well as installation views and ephemera from Jones’s surviving studio, highlight her innovative curatorial approach towards popular art, and the connections she was able to draw across images and objects.
For over a century the Whitechapel Gallery has premiered world-class artists from modern masters such as Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Frida Kahlo to contemporaries such as Sophie Calle, Lucien Freud, Gilbert & George and Mark Wallinger. With beautiful galleries, exhibitions, artist commissions, collection displays, historic archives, education resources, inspiring art courses, dining room and bookshop, the newly expanded Gallery is open all year round, so there is always something free to see. The Gallery is a touchstone for contemporary art internationally, plays a central role in London’s cultural landscape and is pivotal to the continued growth of the world’s most vibrant contemporary art quarter.
Whitechapel Gallery Cafe
A popular destination serving seasonal food during the day, the Café/Bar is closed to the public during the evening and makes for a great event space. Designed by Turner Prize nominee Liam Gillick, the Café/Bar offers a distinctive and contemporary space for entertaining.
The Café/Bar is used for the Whitechapel Gallery programme of spoken word, films and music every Thursday evening. And has a deliscious First Thursday menu special.Whitechapel Gallery Dining Room
Led by Senior Head Chef Emma Duggan and working closely with executive chef Angela Hartnett (in partnership with Smart Hospitality) the team at the Whitechapel Gallery Dining Room bring big flavours and their love of seasonality to the table.
There is a daily-changing menu with the emphasis on seasonal cooking using the very best British ingredients. A range of small dishes start from under £5 and larger plates from around £11.Offering great flexibility, the Whitechapel Gallery Dining Room is the perfect space for a business lunch, a quick bite or leisurely dinner with friends.
Starters include dishes such as whipped goats curd with roasted garlic and popular seasonal favourites such as Portland crab bisque and English asparagus, soft poached egg, Isle of Mull cheese shavings. Main courses including duck hash, fried duck egg, wild garlic pesto and slow-roast pork belly, chorizo, cockles and cider cream, chilli hispi cabbage are loved by our regulars. Puddings feature chocolate and salted caramel tart, vanilla ice cream, a firm favourite; buttermilk panna cotta with rhubarb compote and sticky toffee pudding with toffee sauce and Clotted cream. There is also a selection of British cheeses and a well-considered wine list with many options available by the glass.NIGHTCLOUD
Paper Mache Tiger in association with Sushi Samba will be hosting a weekly night championing the newest talent and special guests DJs. It's going to be a great night where East meets West. NIGHTCLOUD is set to be the new destination for the London party circuit. Boasting the best views of the City - 39 Floors high every Thursday night. It is really such an incredible view of London city!
110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY, London, UK
Brazilian, Japanes, Suchi Bar
Open: Thursday 22:00 - 02:00
Contact: 020 3640 7330The George Tavern Pub
The George Tavern is a legendary venue, public house and constant foundation for a thriving artistic community in the heart of London's east end. Originally a 700 year old tavern mentioned in the writing of Charles Dickens, Samuel Pepys and Geoffrey Chaucer, the renowned venue is a beacon for both emerging and established artists, musicians and creatives alike.