Lot 22: GAVIN TURK
Contemporary Art Evening Sale
February 12, 2010
London, United Kingdom
This work is from an edition of three.
“Oi! is a triptych of life-size photographs of the artist dressed as a tramp, one eyelid closed, pointing a limp finger at a half-imagined adversary, mirroring the stance of Sid in Pop. The piece developed out of his uncommissioned performance as a wino at the private view of Sensation at the Royal Academy. The mammoth exhibition was widely considered the apotheosis of the young British artist scene, and its institutional absorption. Turk’s ‘performance’ – which is what much private view behaviour in any case is – pointed towards the confused social identity of today’s artists who might find themselves entertained at a rich collector’s home only to find they cannot find the bus fare home. Bum is the waxwork version of Oi!. The pose echoes an inebriated Pop. It is a verisimilitude of Turk in the guise of a tramp, wearing some of his own old clothes. The clothes have been subjected to processes reminiscent of 60s body art: Turk has urinated in the trousers and worked up some rancid underarm sweat to achieve a mock-abject trace of his own corporeality in what is otherwise simulacra."
(Alex Farquharson, ‘Tonight, Manzoni, I’m Going to be Gavin Turk’, in Gavin Turk. Collected Works 1994–98, London, 1998)
Provenance: Jay Jopling, London
Dimensions: Each: 243.5 x 197 cm. (95 7/8 x 77 1/2 in).
Artist or Maker: GAVIN TURK b. 1967
Exhibited: South London Gallery, Gavin Turk: The Stuff Show, 9 September – 18 October 1998 (another example exhibited); Carlisle, Tullie House Museum and Art Services, Stranger than Fiction: Photographs, Video and Film by Artists Living in Britian, 10 July – 12 September 2004 (another example exhibited)
Literature: A. Farquharson & J. Compston, Gavin Turk: collected works 1994-1998, London, 1998 (illustrated)
Medium: Triptych: R-type photographs in the artist’s frames.