‘When I look at sculptures of the human figure I am frequently left thinking of all the things that they’ve seen. This is the world of the silent onlooker.’ Ryan Gander
As an artist, Gander is known for avoiding a recognisable style, preferring to work with many different materials to explore new approaches to art. For Night in the Museum, Gander has positioned a range of figurative sculptures so that they can gaze at artworks featuring the colour blue – a colour which is important in Gander’s work, and which for him represents the abstract ideas often found in modern and contemporary art. The figures contemplate a wide selection of post-war British art encompassing different styles and periods. In presenting works in this unusual way, Gander disrupts the role of the curator as a mediator between art and the public, inviting us to look beyond traditional themes and histories.
Night in the Museum represents the work of over thirty artists including Don Brown, Angela Bulloch, Patrick Caulfield, Jacob Epstein, Liam Gillick, Roger Hiorns, David Hockney, Henry Moore, Ben Nicholson, Kerry Stewart, and Rebecca Warren. Also on public display for the first time is Ryan Gander’s new commission for the Arts Council Collection, As old as time itself, slept alone (2015-16) – the latest in an ongoing series in which Gander re-imagines Edgar Degas’ famous work The Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer (1880-81) in different scenarios and stages in life.