Martin Creed

    Martin Creed was born in Wakefield, England, in 1968 and from the age of three was raised in Glasgow, Scotland. He studied at the Slade School of Fine Art, London, from 1986 to 1990.

    Creed’s art takes many forms including performance, painting, print, installation, film, music and the spoken word. He came to prominence in 2001 when he won the Turner Prize with Work 227: The lights going on and off. This controversial work, now in the Tate’s permanent collection, involved the lights in an empty gallery being switched on and off at five second intervals.

    Through his performances Creed uses subtle interventions, such as changing lights, the ringing of bells, a choir singing, ballet dancers dancing or runners running, to highlight and reintroduce us to elements of the everyday.

    Creed’s celebration of the ordinary is also seen in the use of commonplace materials in his other works. These include paper, cardboard, plastic bags, air, light, and text, as well as lego, balls, broccoli, bean bags and party balloons, which may be used alongside conventional art materials such as paint, ink and bronze. Repetition is important to Creed’s work, as he plays with variation and rhythm through repeated motifs and themes, often working in series. Creed’s works are identified and labelled by numbers, so each piece is given equal status, regardless of its size, or what it is made of.

    In 2014 the Hayward Gallery, London, staged a major retrospective of Creed’s work entitled What’s the Point of It?. In 2019 the Kistefos Museum, Jevnaker, Norway, presented an exhibition entitled Inside Out which paired the work of Creed with that of Howard Hodgkin.

    Between 2012 and 2018 an Artist Rooms exhibition of Creed’s work toured venues across the UK including Tate Britain, London; Harris Museum and Art Gallery, Preston; Quay Arts, Isle of Wight; Ferens Art Gallery, Hull; and Tate Liverpool, Liverpool.

    Creed’s works are housed in permanent collections all over the world. Recent solo exhibitions include Centro Botín, Santander, Spain (2019); MARe Museum of Contemporary Art, Bucharest, Romania (2019); Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, Netherlands (2017); Qiao Space, Shanghai, China (2016) Kyoto City University Of Arts Art Gallery, Kyoto, Japan (2016); Phoenix Art Museum, Arizona, USA (2016); Kunsthalle Vogelmann\ Kunstverein Heilbronn, Heilbronn, Germany (2015); Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Connecticut, USA (2013); National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada (2013); CAC Bukovje, Landskrona, Sweden (2012); Museo de Arte de Lima, Lima, Peru (2012) and Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Chicago, USA (2012) amongst others.

    Creed has presented installations in locations as diverse as Braemar Castle, Aberdeenshire, Scotland (2020); Frederica Railway Station, Kolding Library and Vejle Town Hall, Triangle Region, Denmark (2018); Brooklyn Bridge Park, New York (2016); No. 34 Sunridge Avenue, a residential street, Luton, UK (2016) and Guildhall School, London (2013).

    Martin Creed lives and works in London, England and Alicudi, Italy.

    "I like broccoli. It's my favourite vegetable. I eat broccoli every day. I like prints made from broccoli because they look like pictures of trees, and I like trees. But I don't know what colours I like, so I thought I could try a mixture of different colours. These broccoli prints are made with a mixture of different colours." Martin Creed

    Work No. 3396, 2020, by Martin Creed is a lithograph illustrating the colourful trace of a broccoli cut in half and then used as a stamp to leave an imprint. Creed’s work takes many forms including performance, painting, print, installation, film, music and the spoken word. He uses commonplace materials such as plastic bags, blu-tak, balls, party balloons, bean bags, plain sheets of paper, cacti and broccoli, often presenting them in series and sequences. Work No. 3396, typical of the playful nature of the Creed’s work, and a nod to his vegetarianism, is a celebration of the ordinary and everyday.

    The subject matter of this new print derives from Work No. 1000, 2009-10, a monumental colour series comprising 1000 impressions made with pieces of broccoli that were cut crosswise, dipped in 1000 different colours of paint, and then used as stamps on paper. The piece was originally commissioned for a private collection in Vancouver, Canada, and was exhibited in the UK in 2014 as part of Creed’s major retrospective at the Hayward Gallery, London.

    Contact [email protected] with all enquiries. Work No. 3396, 2020, by Martin Creed is published by H. M. Queen Sonja Art Foundation, Norway, Cristea Roberts Gallery, London, and Hauser & Wirth.

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