British sculptor, ALISON WILDING – twice nominated for the Turner Prize and recently named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire – was to open our 2020-21 season. Instead, given the challenging times, Betty Cuningham Gallery is pleased to present a virtual viewing of Alison Wilding: Doors Closing, Doors Opening, marking Wilding’s second exhibition with the gallery. Characteristically, Wilding is known for merging common 'stuff' in uncommon ways to deliver a new message. The recent lockdown turned out to be an incredibly productive time for Wilding; many of the works in this Viewing Room were created during this tumultuous period.
Alison Wilding was born in 1948 and currently lives and works in London. Having studied at Nottingham College of Art, Nottingham; Ravensbourne College of Art and Design, Bromley; and the Royal College of Art, London, Wilding came into prominence in the 1980s as one of a group of sculptors including Richard Deacon and Antony Gormley. Her first major solo exhibition was held at the Serpentine Gallery, London, in 1985 and in 1987 she had her first major exhibition in New York with Project 10: Alison Wilding at the Museum of Modern Art. Tate Liverpool hosted a retrospective, Alison Wilding: Immersion - 10 Years of Work, in 1991.
Since then she has shown extensively throughout the UK and abroad and has been acquired into major public collections in the UK. Public commissions include Migrant 2004 for Snape Maltings, Shimmy 2013 at 10 New Burlington Street, and Herm 2018 for Rathbone Place. Still Water, a memorial to UK citizens affected by terrorism overseas was unveiled at the National Memorial Arboretum in May 2018. Notable awards include a Henry Moore Fellowship at the British School at Rome (1988); Joanna Drew Travel Bursary (2007); The Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award (2008) and Bryan Roberstson Award (2012). Wilding was nominated for the Turner Prize in both 1988 and 1992, and was elected to the Royal Academy in 1999. A monograph by Jo Applin and Briony Fer was published in 2018 to coincide with Right Here and Out There, an exhibition at the De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill.
She was made Eranda Professor of Drawing at the Royal Academy Schools in 2018 and was made an Officer of the British Empire in 2019.