10 June – 31 August 2014, Gallery 7

Pioneers of early cinema are shown alongside leading contemporary artists in a new display at the Whitechapel Gallery.

Twixt Two Worlds is drawn from the collections of Contemporary Art Society member museums across the south of England and is part of the Whitechapel Gallery’s programme opening up public and private collections for everyone.

The exhibition – which takes its title from a book about the famous 19th century medium William Eglinton – maps the pivotal moment in cinema history when still photography evolved into moving images. Inspired by John and William Barnes’ collection of early moving image apparatus held in Hove Museum, this shift is explored through objects, photographs and film.

Highlights of the Contemporary Art Society exhibition include magic lanterns and slides from the late 19th century, films and photographs by pioneers such as William Friese-GreeneEadweard Muybridge and Albert Smith.  Alongside these influential figures are works by contemporary artists including Susan HillerSaskia Olde-Wolbers and  Steven Pippin who revisit the history and techniques of early film.

Founded in 1910, the Contemporary Art Society supports public museums and galleries across the UK, through new acquisitions, gifts, advocacy and advice.

Contemporary Art Society: Twixt Two Worlds is conceived by Arts Council-funded Curatorial Fellow Gaia Tedone in collaboration with the Whitechapel Gallery. It is the fourth and final exhibition in a year-long series of displays showcasing important works of art from regional museums across England. This year-long series of displays is supported by a major grant from Arts Council England. The Whitechapel Gallery’s programme of collection displays is supported by specialist art insurer Hiscox.

Notes to editors
– For over a century the Whitechapel Gallery has premiered world class artists from modern masters such as Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Frida Kahlo to contemporaries such as Sophie Calle, Lucian Freud, Gilbert & George and Mark Wallinger. With beautiful galleries, exhibitions, artist commissions, collection displays, historic archives, education resources, inspiring art courses, dining room and bookshop, the Gallery is open all year round, so there is always something free to see. It is a touchstone for contemporary art internationally, plays a central role in London’s cultural landscape and is pivotal to the continued growth of the world’s most vibrant contemporary art quarter. The Gallery does not own a Collection, but has a dedicated gallery for opening up public and private collections, including five displays from the British Council Collection from April 2009 – May 2010; four displays from The D. Daskalopoulos Collection, Greece, from June 2010 – May 2011; five displays from the Government Art Collection, from June 2011 – September 2012 and four displays from the Collection Sandretto Re Rebaudengo September 2012 – September 2013.
– Founded in 1910, the Contemporary Art Society is a national charity that exists to encourage an appreciation and understanding of contemporary art by a wide audience and to donate works by established and new artists to museums and public galleries across the UK. The Contemporary Art Society has donated more than 8,000 works to museums and galleries – from Bacon, Freud, Hepworth and Moore in their day through to the influential artists of our own times – championing new talent, supporting curators, and encouraging philanthropy and collecting in the UK. In 2012, the organisation acquired its first ever permanent space at 59 Central Street in Clerkenwell, and launched a programme of talks, events and displays for its members and the wider public. www.contemporaryartsociety.org
– Contemporary Art Society: Twixt Two Worlds is conceived by Arts Council-funded Curatorial Fellow Gaia Tedone, supported by the Royal Pavilion & Museums, Brighton
– Contemporary Art Society: Twixt Two Worlds will tour to Towner, Eastbourne from 10 October 2014 – 5  January 2015.
– A fully-illustrated publication, The Best is Not Too Good For You: New Approaches to Public Collections in England, celebrating all four displays from the Contemporary Art Society at the Whitechapel Gallery includes: newly-commissioned essays by Matthew Darbyshire, artist; Helen Rees-Leahy, Director of the Centre of Museology, University of Manchester and Arts-Council funded Curatorial Fellows Anna Colin, Helen Kaplinsky, Ingrid Swenson and Gaia Tedone. It is published on 15 May 2014 at £14.95.
– Specialist art insurer Hiscox, a keen contemporary art collector itself, supports the Whitechapel Gallery’s programme of collections displays because it gives everyone free access to important collections that would not otherwise be available to the public, and engages a diverse audience with art, particularly the local community. www.hiscox.co.uk.
– Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives. It supports a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections. Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. In short, it makes life better. Between 2010 and 2015, it will invest £1.9 billion of public money from government and an estimated £1.1 billion from the National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country. www.artscouncil.org.uk

Visitor Information
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