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For What It’s Worth: Perceptions of Value in Contemporary Art

20 August – 19 October 2013

Artists: Art and Language, Martin Creed, Tacita Dean, Jeremy Deller, Barry Flanagan, Alan Green, Damien Hirst, Andrew Logan, Sara MacKillop, Lisa Milroy, Kathy Prendergast, Grayson Perry, Ingrid Pollard, Andreas Ruthi, Mark Wallinger and Rachel Whiteread.

For What It’s Worth: Perceptions of Value in Contemporary Art

Programme to include interactive family events.

For What It’s Worth brings works by Turner Prize-winning artists to the Gallery at NUA in Norwich, Norfolk. Selected by three MA Curation students from works held in the Arts Council Collection, this exhibition explores how artworks, developed in Britain since the late 1970s, represent and challenge the idea and meaning of value, moving towards varied and sometimes surprising interpretations beyond those of mere financial worth.

Co- curator, Christine Lewis said: “This show presents an opportunity for the public to view works by a list of prominent artists, some of whom have never shown in the area.”

Featuring a blend of painting, print, photography and sculpture, the exhibition is arranged in three thematic strands exploring the notions of value from perspectives such as class, culture and aesthetics (For What Its Worth); the resonance and transformation of material qualities in objects (The Materiality of Small Things); and the political and economic resonances of value in contemporary social history (The Displacement of Value).

Highlights include Wallinger’s ‘A Real Work of Art’, a model racehorse representing ways in which culture, ownership, competition, class and ancestry all play a part in value.

Co- curator, Alice Lee said: “It is an absolute privilege to be able to present such a high quality exhibition to the people of Norwich especially at our level of study.”

Andrew Logan teaches us how to re-evaluate the worth of an everyday object with his giant, embellished safety pin whilst Rachel Whiteread takes an old-fashioned doorknob and casts it in bronze, elevating the status of an ordinary item and simultaneously encapsulating a sense of history or memory. Damien Hirst concentrates on the strategies of collection and display to understand and alter an object’s worth and Tacita Dean’s photograph of an abandoned bubble house comments on social and economical value systems.

Co- curator, Andrea Sanders said: “Working with the Arts Council collection was an amazing opportunity. It was so exciting to be able to handle works by major figures such as Damien Hirst and Grayson Perry. Curating a public exhibition for the NUA gallery as part of its main summer programme was a huge responsibility but immensely satisfying.”

The MA Curation course at NUA is now in its second year and this exhibition is the first collaborative project between NUA and the Arts Council Collection. Alongside the show will be a variety of events, including interactive family activities, and programmed speakers. For What It’s Worth runs until 19th October.