Opening Focal Point Gallery, Southend-on-Sea, before touring nationally
4 July to 27 August 2011
‘Outrageous Fortune’ is a new Hayward Touring exhibition, curated by Andrew Hunt, director of Focal Point Gallery, showcasing contemporary artists’ interpretations of the classic Tarot de Marseille deck of cards. Tarot playing cards originated in Italy in the 15th century. Used in most of Europe to play games, in the English-speaking world the tarot is generally associated with divination and fortune telling. A rich source of imagery, it includes such archetypes as The Fool, The Magician, The High Priestess, The Lovers, The Wheel of Fortune, and The Hanged Man. For this project, seventy-eight artists, whose work encompasses a variety of formal, conceptual, expressionist, literary or design-based approaches, have been asked to create a card for a contemporary tarot pack. Each artist has been drawn a card randomly, and invited to reinterpret in their own way.
Among the contributions are The Nine of Swords (signifying rewards due to one’s efforts) by Mike Nelson; The Four of Pentacles (one who is attached to material wealth) by Alan Kane; The Hermit (solitude, the passage of time and a search for virtue) by Suzanne Treister; The King of Wands (leadership and masculine authority) by Dan Rees; The Two of Pentacles (different possibilities) by Adam Chodzko; The King of Chalices (imposing one’s will and interaction) by Cerith Wyn Evans; The Ten of Chalices (attaining one’s goals) by Cullinan Richards; The Four of Chalices (initial success) by Tris Vonna-Michell; The Ace of Chalices (new beginnings) by Anna Barriball; The Magician (taking advantage of others or being taken advantage of) by Melanie Gilligan; Temperance (a balance of character and psychological health) by Simon Davenport; The Knight of Swords (determination and setting boundaries) by Will Holder; The Three of Swords (formulating a strategy and self defence) by Lindsay Seers.
The exhibition will consist of the original artworks, all produced to the same near-A3 format, framed and accompanied by explanatory captions, and an example of the original Tarot de Marseille pack. A special numbered edition of 1,000 printed decks of cards will be produced, which will be given away to recipients nominated by the artists. The box will be designed by Scott King and the back of the cards by Susan Hiller, and both these artists’ original work will be included in the exhibition.
The exhibition opens at Focal Point Gallery, Southend-on-Sea (4 July to 27 August 2011) and then tours to Queens Hall Arts Centre, Hexham (10 September to 9 October 2011), Jersey Arts Centre, St Helier (24 October to 12 November 2011), mac, Birmingham (10 December 2011 to 8 January 2012), Holden Gallery, Manchester (14 January to 12 February 2012), University of Hertfordshire Galleries (24 February to 21 April 2012) and Bedales Gallery, Petersfield (27 October to 2 December 2012).