21 Mar V&A reveals Tim Walker’s largest exhibition to date: Wonderful Things
A new V&A exhibition opening in September 2019, invites visitors to experience the fantastical imagination of Tim Walker. Tim Walker: Wonderful Things is the largest exhibition of Walker’s pictures to date. The exhibition celebrates one of the world’s most creative photographers Walker’s extraordinary works and his contribution to image-making over the last 25 years. V&A’s collection plays an inspirational role in his creative process and there are 10 new photographic objects which are influenced by the collections directly.
Tim Walker said: “To me, the V&A has always been a palace of dreams – it’s the most inspiring place in the world. The museum’s collection is so wide and eclectic, and I think that’s why it resonates with me so much. Many of the objects that I saw during my research at the museum made my heart swell and I wanted to try to create a photograph that would relate not only to the physical presence and beauty of that object, but also to my emotional reaction to it. Each new shoot is a love letter to an object from the V&A collection, and an attempt to capture my encounter with the sublime. For me, beauty is everything. I’m interested in breaking down the boundaries that society has created, to enable more varied types of beauty and the wonderful diversity of humanity to be celebrated. Preparing for this exhibition over the past three years has pushed me into new territories, which is very exciting, and I’m at a stage in my life where I feel brave enough to do that.”
Susanna Brown, Curator of Photographs at the V&A, said: “We started discussing this project back in 2015 and it’s been a marvellous journey. Tim embarked on a sustained exploration of the museum and many V&A colleagues helped to spark his imagination by unlocking our collection stores and sharing the fascinating stories behind the objects with him. Tim has a wildly inquisitive mind and a boundless energy, he never stops innovating and these new pictures are some of the most spectacular he has ever made. Tim’s photographs and Shona’s exhibition design combine to create a show that I think our visitors will adore. The book which accompanies the exhibition reveals more about his complex process and includes fascinating interviews with Tim and twenty of his closest collaborators.”
The exhibition is designed by Walker’s long-term collaborator Shona Heath and it showcases over 300 items; photographs, short films, props, scrapbooks. His models include Edie Campbell, Lily Cole, Karen Elson and Stella Tennant and designers include Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Comme des Garçons and Rick Owens. The first room of the exhibition displays imaginative fashion stories alongside portraits of personalities such as Sir David Attenborough, Peter Blake and David Hockney, and a group of performers include Riz Ahmed, Cate Blanchett, Björk, Timothée Chalamet, Beth Ditto, Daniel Day-Lewis, Claire Foy, Saoirse Ronan and Solange Knowles.
The exhibition Tim Walker: Wonderful Things is curated by the V&A’s Susanna Brown and runs from 21 September 2019 to 8 March 2020. Tickets will go on sale on 13 June 2019.
Image: Tim Walker, ‘Tilda Swinton’, Renishaw Hall, Derbyshire, 2018 (c) Tim Walker Studio
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