Tate galleries are renowned for holding the world’s finest collection of British Art, from 1500 to the present day, and a leading collection of International Modern and Contemporary Art. Originally founded in 1897, Tate is now made up of four galleries: Tate Britain (1897) Tate Liverpool (1988) Tate St Ives(1993) and the iconic Tate Modern (2000). Tate Gallery in London opened in 1897 and was transformed into Tate Britain in 2000 to house the UK's collection of British art. Tate St Ives opened in Cornwall in 1993 to celebrate the gallery’s connection to the local artist colony who had lived and worked there, such as Barbara Hepworth, Naum Gabo, Alfred Wallis and Mark Rothko. The gallery now displays British and international modern and contemporary art. During the 1980s, a warehouse at the disused Albert Dock in Liverpool was chosen as the site for a new Tate gallery, known as the ‘Tate of the North.’ This would be a gallery with a distinct identity, dedicated to showing modern art and encouraging a new, younger audience. More than one million people a year now visit Tate Liverpool, cementing its position as a venue for major European exhibitions of modern art Since it opened in May 2000, more than 40 million people have visited Tate Modern. In 2009 Tate embarked on a major project to develop the site, working with Herzog & de Meuron to transform the power station’s spectacular redundant oil tanks. With the opening of the Tanks in July 2012, Tate Modern is now home to the world’s first museum galleries permanently dedicated to exhibiting live art, performance, installation and film works. Tate produces exclusive merchandise for their exhibitions as well as commissioning artists and designers to create a wide array of unique products ranging from greeting cards to jewellery, including home-ware, t-shirts, art materials and textiles. Tate is also a leading publisher on the visual arts, publishing its own award-winning books since 1911. Along with its range of books on art, they also publish innovative and creative illustrated books for children and adults. All profits from the merchandise and publishing go to support the galleries in their ambition to increase the public knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of art.
Chris Ofili came to prominence in the early 1990s with richly orchestrated paintings combining rippling dots of paint, drifts of glitter, collaged images and elephant dung - varnished, often studded with map pins and applied to the picture surface as well as supporting the canvas - a combination of physical elevation and symbolic link to the Earth. He won the Turner Prize in 1998 and over the past decade has exhibited in many international institutions. In 2003 he was selected to represent Britain at the 50th Venice Biennale, where he presented his ambitious exhibition Within Reach. In Ofili's work the rhythmic patterning of painterly and cultural elements - sacred and profane, personal and political, from high and low culture - plays on ideas of beauty while also carrying messages about black culture, history and exoticism. Born in Manchester in 1968 and educated at the Royal College of Art in London, Ofili now lives and works in Trinidad.
Fiona Rae has developed a complex, powerful and highly individual body of work. Employing a battery of painterly marks, graphic signs and symbols, her paintings explore the profusion of our visual and material culture and take us on an exhilarating ride through the possibilities of paint. In recent work the mood is ambiguous – flowers, hearts and cartoon characters might imply a sweet, almost cloying world, yet Rae’s dark and brooding palette, combined with virtuoso washes and veils of paint, evoke dissolution and decay. The paintings seem to suggest the seductions, contradictions and disappointments of contemporary life and culture. Born in Hong Kong in 1963, Rae completed a BA Hons Fine Art degree at Goldsmiths College in 1987. The following year, she participated in Damien Hirst’s Freeze in London’s Docklands, and within four years of graduating, she was shortlisted for the Turner Prize. Rae has exhibited extensively in museums and galleries internationally and her work is held in prestigious public and private collections worldwide. She lives and works in London.
English artist Gary Hume, born in 1962, graduated from Goldsmith’s College, London, in 1988. He was part of Damien Hirst’s 1988 Freeze exhibition now considered to be the launch of the Young British Artists. He currently lives and works in London and upstate New York. Departing from his ‘door paintings’ Hume started making small-scale gloss paintings on aluminum, using images from the media, celebrities and animals. His bright palette and 2-D surfaces describe simplified forms often describing pop culture and childhood idioms.
English painter and printmaker. He began his studies in 1956 at Chelsea School of Art, London, continuing at the Royal College of Art (1960–63), one year below the students identified as originators of Pop art. In the early 1960s Caulfield's painting was characterized by flat images of objects paired with angular geometric devices or isolated against unmodulated areas of color. He adopted the anonymous technique of the sign painter, dispensing with visible brushwork and distracting detail and simplifying the representation of objects to a basic black outline in order to present ordinary images as emblems of a mysterious reality. He deliberately chose subjects that seemed hackneyed or ambiguous in time: not only traditional genres but self-consciously exotic and romantic themes and views of ruins and the Mediterranean. Gradually Caulfield's attention shifted to the architectural elements to which he had earlier made isolated reference. Caulfield began to insert highly detailed passages in the manner of Photorealism into his characteristically stylized idiom, playing to great effect with ambiguous definitions of reality and artifice. Always a slow and exacting worker, he sustained a high level of pictorial invention. During the 1980s he again turned to a more stripped-down aesthetic, particularly in large paintings in which the precise disposition of only a few identifiable elements miraculously transforms an ostensibly abstract picture through the creation of a vivid sense of place.
Patrick Heron was one of the first British artists to embrace abstraction in the 1950s, absorbing and distilling a wide range of influences, particularly Matisse and Braque, to create works that convey a purely visual sensation.
Peter Doig's paintings have a tendency to disorientate us, even when they depict recognizable imagery such as figures and buildings. We are often plunged into an unreliable world of reflections, sometimes literally when we are presented with the icy lakes and watery depths but more often in a metaphorical sense - the mirror image of memory or fantasy. Doig invites us to consider the status of the people, places and events that populate his pictures, whether they exist in private or public realms, in personal or shared experiences. Knowing that Doig's childhood was spent partly in Canada and partly in Trinidad, might tempt us to read his art as being a remembrance of youth in the snow and a meditation on a past and present awash with warm Caribbean hues. His paintings are ultimately to do with the ways in which, through a variety of processes, the painted image attains a specific resonance, a condition that is beyond words. Born in Edinburgh in 1959, Peter Doig now lives and works in Trinidad. Doig has had major solo international exhibitions, most recently at Tate Britain (2008), Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris and Dallas Museum of Art (2005).
Sara Fanelli was born in Florence. She came to London to study art and has been working there as a freelance designer and illustrator ever since graduating from the Royal College of Art in 1995. Her clients include the New Yorker, Penguin books, Faber & Faber, Tate Modern, V&A, Ron Arad and Issey Miyake. Her award-winning children’s books have been published in many languages and her work has been exhibited around the world, at the V&A, Tate Modern, Galleria d’Arte Moderna Bologna, Biblioteca Nacional Madrid and many others.