Welcome to Hull, the UK City of Culture! During 2017, the doors are being thrown open wide and the world is invited to see what the city has to offer as Hull delivers 365 days of arts and culture.
SEASON THREE - FREEDOM
The city enters its summer season (1 July - 30 September) packed full of festivals and events that celebrate Hull’s rebellious streak and its freedom of thought, unbound by convention. The third season not only explores the pivotal role Hull played in the emancipation movement, as it helped to ignite the still unfinished global journey towards equality and social justice for all, but will also look at broader interpretations of freedom as a platform to create and debate, share and enjoy, reflect and reimagine.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE YEAR INCLUDE:
- Hull New Theatre reopens following £16m transformation with a visit from The Royal Ballet led by its Hull-born director, Kevin O’Hare
- Philip Larkin’s life and work celebrated with major exhibition New Eyes Each Year – and Grayson Perry as The Philip Larkin Society Distinguished Guest Lecturer
- Slung Low’s year-long epic adventure Flood by James Phillips told online, live in Hull and on BBC television.
- International pioneers of site-responsive performance dreamthinkspeak premiere ONE DAY, MAYBE in Hull
- The Ferens Art Gallery hosts the Turner Prize and presents a major exhibition exploring Skin, including works by Ron Mueck, Lucian Freud and the first showing of Spencer Tunick’s photographic work featuring 3,200 local people in the nude and painted blue for Sea of Hull
- The 10th Waterstones Children’s Laureate will be announced in Hull prior to the first ever children’s literature festival in the city
- New work by artists including Bob & Roberta Smith, Tania Kovats, Chris Dobrowolski, Claire Barber and Claire Morgan in shopping centres, car parks, streets and public squares as part of the visual art series Look Up.
DIVING INTO CULTURE
But what has The Deep got to do with City of Culture we hear you ask? Well, here is just a taster of what 2017 holds for us at Hull's award-winning aquarium.
We are involved in a series of new artworks, located at or close to The Deep inspiring you to look up from your phone and take in the sights around you.
The Deep has invested significant funds and partnered with Hull 2017 to deliver a series of new and exciting artworks as part of the phenomenal Look Up programme, which is designed to challenge people's perceptions of Hull and offer different ways to experience the city. This year long programme of artists' works have been made specifically for Hull's public places and spaces and will be focused on the marine environment.
Chris has brought the beach of the Humber to the car park of The Deep. Featuring Hull landscapes and plastic toys, his new installation looks at environmental concerns around plastics in our oceans. Not all cars parked there will belong to visitors, and their contents may suprise you. Chris studied at the Hull School of Art, and spent most of his time building different vehicles to escape in. He's somehow come full circle, but is very happy to be making work here in the city once again.
Tania Kovats is creating a new large scale sculptural work called 'BLEACHED', which is the second commission in a collaboration between The Deep and Hull 2017. It has been created by Kovats as her response to both the beauty of coral and its fragile position in the world's ecosystem.
BLEACHED is accompanied by other works by Tania, linked to themes of the ocean life and environment. At the C4Di exhibition space there are new drawings on canvas, Sea Mark, and existing sculptures of ocean bowls, Indian Pacific and Atlantic. Showing in public areas of The Deep are the barnacle sculpture Colony made in response to her residency in the Galapagos Islands and a series of evaporation ink drawings.
A multi-sensory coming-of-age, supernatural thriller, this is a ground-breaking, world first theatre experience, told through live theatre and 360 degree Virtual Reality. Frogman blurs the boundaries between reality and fiction, the physical and the virtual. It will be performed to an audience of 30, who will each be given a VR headset to experience new ways into storytelling in a theatre environment. In association with Brisbane Powerhouse and with guidance from The Great Barrier Reef Foundation.
NICK HUNT (on show July and August)
Nick has a real passion for photography, both above water and below. After leaving a corporate career in 2008 he began travelling around the world for 2 years but now resides in South East Asia working as an underwater photographer.
Having grown up in Hull he now lives in Koh Lanta, Krabi, Thailand working between seasons in Thailand (Nov – April) and Indonesia (May – Oct).
Since making the decision to leave the UK, he has crossed many continents, visited a number of places and dived many oceans. As well as exploring the underwater world he has enjoyed his time exploring new countries, cultures and meeting new people from many backgrounds.
He has a real passion for sharing his knowledge and experience amongst his students and jointly with his photographic skills has provided an experience of a lifetime with memories to last.
ERNST HAECKEL (on show September and October)
Haeckel was a German Biologist, Naturalist and Artist who discovered and named thousands of new species. In 1899 he began to publish a series of extraordinary images that changed the way we viewed the relationship between Art and Science.
100 of his images were put together to create 10 volumes of Art Forms of Nature. Many of the organisms included within these collections were first described and classified by Haeckel himself. This stunning combination remains, to this day, an astounding record of life on earth.
The subjects of each lithographic plate were carefully selected so that they would encapsulate the organisation of organisms. Haeckel was no stay at home biologist. Throughout his lengthy career he discovered 150 new species of simple organisms called Radiolarians.
Between 1859 and 1887 he described several thousand more new species. He also coined many biological terms that we use today – phylogeny, phylum and stem cell – the most notable being the word ecology.
These images have been reproduced with the kind permission of the ZSL (Zoological Society of London) Library, which houses a wide range of modern and historic books on the subjects of animals and their conservation, along with a huge catalogue of journals and magazines, the ZSL archives, zoo-related ephemera and unique artworks. Founded in 1826, ZSL is an international scientific, conservation and educational charity whose mission is to promote and achieve the worldwide conservation of animals and their habitats.
ALEXANDER REICHARDT (on November and December)
Reichardt's compelling imagery is based strongly on the motif of the fish as the all-encompassing symbol of the sea and its fruitfulness. His exquisite fish designs feature on the ceramic and porcelain work of Bolesch and are incorporated into artefacts of luminous beauty that include silver jewellery, Naxian marble, brass, wood, and lithographs.
From his earliest years, Alexander Reichardt has engaged with the sea in every way and most intensely through scuba diving, a pursuit that has invested his art with its unique aesthetic. Such close engagement has also imbued him with a profound sympathy for the marine environment in general and his engagement with marine conservation is expressed through his close association with the Cousteau Divers.
Thus, respect for the sea, for its beauty and its danger, defines Alexander Reichardt's aesthetic and ethical view of the marine environment. He believes that the rich diversity of the Mediterranean that has captivated him from his earliest years has been greatly diminished in his own lifetime. His artistry and his beautiful images are a celebration of that diversity and reflect also a powerful plea for its recovery and restoration.