The Crisis Commission

Isolation, security and space – themes often explored by artists- are being given a newly poignant context in The Crisis Commission art show opening today at Somerset house, which has seen prominent contemporary artists creating new works in response to the issues surrounding homelessness.


Yinka Shonibare, Homeless Man, 2012

Source: C Yinka Shonibare, MBE > Photo: Shaun Bloodworth

Yinka Shonibare, Homeless Man, 2012

Featured artists include Tracey Emin, Antony Gormley, Yinka Shonibare, Jonathan Yeo, Gilian Wearing, Bob & Roberta Smith, Nika Neelova and Nathan Coley.

Following the show, the pieces will be auctioned off at Christie’s to raise money for Crisis, the homelessness charity that delivers services for homeless people and campaigns for change.

Each artist was briefed to create a work that responded to the themes of isolation, property, security and space, with about ten or eleven pieces on show, according to the show curator Laurence Sillers, who is also chief curator for the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art.

Tracey Emin, Trust Me 2011

Sillers says, ‘The artists have each been given the opportunity to make a new work that responds to some of the more wider themes and issues that surround homelessness – personal space and human need, shelter and isolation. In many cases they’re ideas that tap very readily into the practice of the artists that have been approached.’

Antony Gormley, Contract 2011

Source: Photograph by Stephen White, London (c) the artist

Antony Gormley, Contract 2011Antony Gormley, Contract 2011

Gormley says, ‘This exhibition allows one to think about those bodies that have no place. I believe that sculpture can powerfully evoke the nameless, the voiceless and the placeless and I’m proud to be part of and am inspired by this visionary project. The work that I am making tires to evoke a fallen body that is nevertheless not at rest.’

Sillers adds, ‘The artists have responded in a very open way that throws the questions back on the audience. A lot of propositions are made really in a way that will just ease out a bit of self-examination in the audiences that see the show: how they confront an issue that’s really prevalent in today’s society, and one that we’re all implicated in.’

the artists
the artists

The Crisis Commission show runs form 14 March – 22 April at Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R. The auction will take placw on 3 May at Christie’s, 8 King Street, St. James’s London, SW1Y

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