Victoria Miro announces Elmgreen & Dragset’s first solo show in the gallery and a new production of their acclaimed play Drama Queens which will be performed for one night only on Sunday 12 October at London’s Old Vic Theatre.
Too Late features a re-staging of the entire Victoria Miro space. Visitors will be met by a total transformation of the gallery’s interior architecture via several new interconnecting large-scale installations by Elmgreen & Dragset. Through mid November, Victoria Miro Gallery will appear as ‘The Mirror’ – described by the artists as “a party that’s already over: lights are still blinking and the disco ball sadly spinning, but there’s no-one on the dance floor, and the last round has been served long ago.”
In a world where social and sexual relationships are now invariably created in isolation from real space and time, Too Late reflects on the loss of common social ground. As conditions for social engagement become increasingly frustrated by control mechanisms – such as licensing and smoking laws, stringent surveillance and economic exclusion – and personal interaction thwarted by alternative platforms such as Myspace, Facebook and Gaydar, the artists stage a momentary reversal of the gentrification process and a disruption of socially sanctioned ways of behaviour.
Throughout their career, Elmgreen & Dragset have investigated modes in which art is presented and perceived. In their socially engaged installations, objects and performances, the artists reconfigure the familiar with characteristic wit and subversive humour. From the transformation of New York City’s Bohen Foundation into a fictional 13th Street Subway Station in 2004, to the siting of a Prada boutique in the middle the Texan desert in 2005, to their critically acclaimed The Welfare Show in 2006 at Serpentine Gallery, Elmgreen & Dragset’s work raises issues around how designs and spaces influence and reflect social conventions and behavioural patterns. Wryly entertaining, their work puts an amusing spin on serious cultural concerns.
Gala in Aid of the Old Vic Theatre Trust, Sunday 12 October
The Old Vic Theatre is to collaborate with Elmgreen & Dragset to stage a new production of their acclaimed work Drama Queens on Sunday 12 October. Drama Queens features six famous sculptures as its protagonists, including Jeff Koons’ Rabbit and Giacometti’s Walking Man. A specially cast group of actors, including Old Vic Artistic Director Kevin Spacey, will voice the sculptures, which will be performed live for the first time.
The evening is produced by The Old Vic with support from Victoria Miro in aid of The Old Vic Theatre Trust’s Creative Development Programme.
Notes to Editors
Based in Berlin, Michael Elmgreen (b. 1961, Denmark) and Ingar Dragset (b. 1969, Norway) have worked as a collaborative team since the mid-1990s. The artists have recently been awarded an unprecedented two pavilions – the Nordic and the Danish – for the 2009 Venice Biennale. Following an international competition in 2006, their proposal for the first national memorial for the homosexual victims of the Nazi regime was accepted, and later opened in May 2008.
Elmgreen & Dragset have exhibited extensively, including This is the First Day of My Life, Malmö Konsthall (2007), The Welfare Show, Serpentine Gallery (2006), MCA Chicago (2005), Tate Modern (2004), Louisiana Museum (2004), Kunsthalle Zurich (2001), Moderna Museet (2000) and Musée d’art moderne de la Ville de Paris (1998). The artists have also participated in numerous biennials such as the first edition of the Berlin Biennial in 1998 and the Venice, Istanbul, Gwangju and Sao Paolo biennials. They are currently featured in the U-Turn Copenhagen Quadriennial and Yokohama Triennial. In 2003 Elmgreen & Dragset won the prestigious Preis der Nationalgalerie für Junge Kunst at Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin.