"The Whitechapel taught Britain to love Modern Art." The Guardian. The Whitechapel was founded in 1901 to bring great art to the people of East London. The Gallery is internationally acclaimed for its exhibitions of modern and contemporary art... Read More
"The Whitechapel taught Britain to love Modern Art." The Guardian.
The Whitechapel was founded in 1901 to bring great art to the people of East London.
The Gallery is internationally acclaimed for its exhibitions of modern and contemporary art and its pioneering education and public events programs.
The Whitechapel has premiered international artists such as Pablo Picasso, Frida Kahlo, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Nan Goldin, and provided a showcase for Britain’s most significant artists from Gilbert and George to Lucian Freud, Peter Doig to Mark Wallinger.
The Gallery plays a unique role in the capital’s cultural landscape and is pivotal to the continued growth of East London as the world’s most vibrant contemporary art quarter.
The Whitechapel’s history is a history of firsts:
1939, Guernica, Picasso’s iconic depiction of the horrors of the Spanish civil war is displayed at the Whitechapel on its first and only visit to Britain
1958, the first major show in Britain of seminal American abstract expressionist Jackson Pollock
1961, British premiere of Mark Rothko – the installation of his work at the Whitechapel becomes his template for all subsequent shows
1970 and 1971, first shows of British artists David Hockney, Gilbert and George and Richard Long
1982, the Whitechapel introduces little-known Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo to London audiences
1993, the Whitechapel showcases Lucien Freud, one of Britain’s greatest living figurative painters
2001 and 2002, Liam Gillick and Nan Goldin stage their first major solo shows in the UK.
The Whitechapel has curated groundbreaking group exhibitions ranging from the proto-pop art show This is Tomorrow of 1956 to the revisioning of modernism in the 2004 blockbuster, Faces in the Crowd.
Since 1901, art has been presented alongside education. A not-for-profit educational charity, the Whitechapel has pioneered artists’ residencies in schools and other education innovations that have been adopted as models across the UK and internationally.
The Whitechapel is entering the most exciting phase in its 100-year history: an ambitious £10.5 million expansion. By incorporating the former library building, the Gallery will double in size.
The Whitechapel Project will:
• Ensure the Whitechapel’s international reputation as a world-class centre of excellence for contemporary and modern art by increasing gallery space by 78%
• Offer artists greater opportunities for professional development, research, exhibiting and making new work.
• Provide a platform for important private and public collections.
• Offer more opportunities for learning by trebling training and education space.
• Celebrate art’s hidden histories by animating the Gallery’s historically important archive.
• Bring light and life to East London through the year-round opening of a landmark cultural destination.
• Create prosperity in the local community by attracting more visitors each year.
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