Sea of Hull nudes to be flagship City of Culture exhibition
An exhibition showing thousands of blue nudes in Hull has been announced as the City of Culture's flagship exhibition.
Artist Spencer Tunick photographed 3,200 people at locations around Hull on 9 July for the Sea of Hull project.
The photos will be displayed alongside major works by Lucien Freud and Ron Mueck in the Ferens Art Gallery's SKIN exhibition from 22 April.
Sea of Hull featured people from around the world and is said to be the largest nude installation in the UK.
The models were painted blue to represent water.
New York-based Mr Tunick said he noted shades of blue from various maritime paintings at the Ferens gallery during a scouting trip in 2015 and made them into body paint.
He said: "By bringing the colours of the Ferens' canvases into the streets and on to the bodies, I was able to successfully realize my vision of recreating the lost waterways of Hull with the brilliant and vibrant colours of the water."
Ferens' art curator Kirsten Simister said the SKIN exhibition examines how the nude continues to fascinate and inspire artists.
She said it was a "very exciting, long-awaited moment" which had been planned for four years.
"The idea for SKIN was developed at the time of the bid for UK City of Culture and it's incredibly exciting to see this vision now becoming a reality," Ms Simister said.
"SKIN acts as a major centrepiece for the year and through a variety of partnerships we have secured works of the very highest quality.
Since reopening following refurbishment in January, Ms Simister said footfall at the Ferens had risen from 10,000 to 92,000 when compared to January and February 2016.
Hull City Council said visitor numbers at the city's other attractions had also increased.
SKIN is a free exhibition at the Ferens from 22 April to 13 August.