New ‘Finding the Value’ exhibition to open at York St Mary’s

York St MarysNew work by artist Andrew Bracey will go on show as part of a new exhibition opening in York this week.

Finding the Value is a new installation at the medieval York St Mary’s church, which is inspired by the £2million Madsen Banquet. Andrew Bracey, who is Programme Leader for Lincoln’s MA Fine Art and MA Contemporary Curatorial Practice, is one of five artists who have been invited to create new work that responds to the collection of a local man who bequeathed his estate to York Museums Trust.

Peter Madsen and his sister Karen Madsen left their estates to York Museums Trust in 2011, providing the £2 million financial trigger needed to instigate the £8 million development of York Art Gallery, which is due to reopen in 2015. Included in Peter Madsen’s estate was his own varied collection, which is the stimulus for Finding the Value.

This new exhibition will explore the idea of inheritance of cultural values and the meaning of value, with Andrew choosing a selection of paintings from the Madsen collection with which to create new artworks. HisReconFigure Paintings feature an additional, abstract painted structure superimposed upon the human figures in the paintings.

Andrew has worked with different styles and types of figurative paintings to show the diversity of the Madsen collection, and he will create an intimate space to house his paintings – a ‘white cube’ within a mirrored structure that reflects the unique architecture of the church and also the viewer.

The other commissioned artists who will show their work as part of the installation are Alison Erika Fode, Yvette Hawkins, Susie MacMurray and Simon Venus. The majority of the new works will be for sale, and all proceeds will go to the York Art gallery redevelopment fund.

Dr Janet Barnes, CBE, chief executive of York Museums Trust, said: “We have been extremely grateful for the generosity of Peter Madsen and Karen Madsen, without which it would not have been possible to redevelop York Art Gallery on this scale. The financial value of their estates is very obvious, but Peter Madsen was also generous in leaving us his collection of paintings, prints, books and ethnographic and decorative art. We acquired some items for the collection as a permanent record of Peter Madsen’s generosity and the rest was sold at auction to raise funds for York Art Gallery. The residue that was left was of much lesser value so wedecided to take these works, both images and objects, as the raw material for new works. It is intended that the new works should respond to, investigate and develop the values and cultural meaning of the original works. It may even be the case that the financial value of the new works will greatly exceed the present value of the original material. It is hoped to be a creative questioning of, and experiment in, the inheritance anddevelopment of cultural values.”

The exhibition will take place in York St Mary’s from Friday 4th July to Sunday 2nd November 2014. It will be open daily 10am – 5pm and entry is free.

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