14 Mar Colchester’s Firstsite to exhibit fictional presentation BRONZE AGE
Firstsite, Colchester’s next exhibition is BRONZE AGE c. 3500 BC – AD 2018, a fictional presentation from a forgotten museum. Conceived and originated by Dr. Neil Wenman in collaboration with Mary Beard, the broadcaster and Professor of Classics at the University of Cambridge, the show focuses solely on works made of bronze or from the Bronze Age period.
The show is comprised of artefacts on loan from regional museums and private collections nationwide, objects obtained from eBay, and sculptures by artists. These include modern masters such as Louise Bourgeois, Alberto Giacometti, Henry Moore, and Fausto Melotti, and contemporary works by Phyllida Barlow, Subodh Gupta, Martin Creed and Mark Wallinger.
An iteration of Hauser & Wirth’s satirical museological presentation at Frieze London 2017, the show has been curated specifically for Colchester – the earliest recorded Roman town in Great Britain – and also features works from the collections of Colchester and Ipswich Museums.
The artefacts and artworks are separated into six themes: Domestic Life, Decoration & Adornment, Fertility & the Body, Religion & Burial, Trade & Agriculture and War & Battle, mimicking the curatorial choices of historical museum exhibitions.
Contemporary works of art and historical artefacts are mischievously mixed with miscellaneous bronze items purchased from eBay. Masquerading as archaeological finds, these invite us to ponder how the significance of an object can be dictated by context. Moving away from the traditional white walls of an art gallery, the presentation challenges expectations and highlights the power of display.