Mike Nelson is the next artist to take on the Tate Britain Commission.
The annual commission invites artists to make a work in response to the unique architecture and history of the neo-classical Duveen Galleries at the heart of Tate Britain.
Artists who have previously undertaken the Commission include Anthea Hamilton (2018), Cerith Wyn Evans (2017) and Pablo Bronstein (2016). The series builds on a long tradition of sculpture exhibitions in the prestigious Duveen Galleries, which has included memorable installations by Richard Long, Rebecca Horn, Richard Serra and Luciano Fabro.
Mike Nelson constructs large-scale, site specific sculptural environments that often arise from a period of living and working in a particular location. His works fuse literary, filmic, socio-political and cultural references to create carefully orchestrated tableaux. For example, The Coral Reef (2000, Tate Collection) lures the viewer through a labyrinth of abandoned, interconnected rooms. Individual narratives and cultural histories unfold through the different objects that occupy these spaces: an empty sleeping bag, a calendar in Arabic, a wall hanging of JFK, a clown mask.