Entertainment & Arts

Tate Modern unveils latest Turbine Hall commission

Richard Tuttle commission in Tate Modern's Turbine Hall Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The giant wooden structure hangs from the ceiling and weighs 15 tonnes

The Tate Modern gallery in London has unveiled the latest art commission to fill its vast Turbine Hall space.

The 24m (78ft) sculpture weighs 15 tonnes and is made of wood draped with swathes of brightly coloured fabric.

The sculpture, by the US artist Richard Tuttle, is suspended over the atrium and is intended to resemble aeroplane wings.

Tuttle said it was "the job of the artist is to try to find a reunion between the mechanical and the human".

The wooden shapes of the sculpture, he continued, were designed to resemble aeroplane parts in order to "raise the issue of genocide".

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Tate Modern said the work reflected Tuttle's fascination with 'the history and contemporary use of textiles'

"I wanted to be a pilot and passed everything and then realised that they wanted me to fly over Vietnam at such a height and drop bombs on innocent children," he went on.

"I'm born in the 20th Century and my soul, if you will, is a 20th Century soul. Sometimes I call this the first piece of the 21st Century."

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The work features 2,500 square metres of poppy- and marigold-coloured fabric from India

The Tate commission, which will remain on view until 6 April, ties in with a retrospective of the renowned sculptor and poet's work at the Whitechapel Gallery in east London.

According to Tate Modern, the work "brings together three specially-made fabrics, each of which combines natural and man-made fibres.

"These are suspended from the ceiling as a sculptural form... to create a huge volume of joyous colour and fluidity."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Parts of the structure are intended to resemble aeroplane wings

The last work to be seen in the Turbine Hall was Tino Sehgal's live performance piece These Associations two years ago.

That free-form, interactive piece saw visitors swept up in impromptu dances, races and conversations by choreographed performers.

There have been no art installations in the Turbine Hall since then due to building work.

Earlier this year, it was announced that Korean car manufacturer Hyundai would be the hall's new sponsor, beginning in 2015.

Work in the atrium was previously sponsored by Unilever, whose 12-year association saw large works by Anish Kapoor, Rachel Whiteread and others occupy the space.

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