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Bulk: Everlasting Colour (2023)

© Celine Condorelli. Photo credit: National Gallery, London





Acid dyes, Textile


640 x 340 cm


Presented by the Contemporary Art Society through a partnership with the 2022 National Gallery Artist in Residence programme, with the support of Anna Yang and Joseph Schull, 2023/24

Ownership history:

Purchased from Galeria Vera Cortes, Lisbon by the Contemporary art Society, through the partnership with the 2023 National Gallery Artist in Residence programme, with the support of Anna Yang and Joseph Schull, 2024; presented to Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery (RAMM), Exeter, 2023/24
Céline Condorelli navigates the boundaries of public and private domains, art and function, as well as labour and leisure to reimagine conceptions of culture and society. Within institutional settings and public spaces, Condorelli emphasises the material and temporal nature of exhibiting through sculpture, architecture and installation. Her extensive body of work explores alternative modes of communal living and working, addressing notions of public space, the commons and property relations. Condorelli’s practice continuously explores the less explicit elements that compose the structures through which individuals encounter the world – be they cultural, economic, material, social or political – the apparatuses of visibility that are often taken for granted, and which the artist describes as ‘support structures’. Condorelli’s interventions forge new ways to engage with culture, seeking to reintegrate art into everyday life through a nuanced and embodied understanding.

As the National Gallery’s third Artist in Residence in 2022-23, Condorelli created an immersive installation in its Gallery 31. Titled Pentimenti, the installation reflected her year-long access to the archives and architecture of both the National Gallery and the partner museum, the Royal Albert Memorial Museums (RAMM) in Exeter. Among masterpieces by Claude Poussin and the Le Nain brothers, visitors were invited to lie down on her carpet work and contemplate the printed textile suspended from the ceiling, all the while taking in the sounds of everyday life in Trafalgar Square emanating from the ventilation grilles in the floor. Fascinated by the scientific research that is routinely undertaken at the gallery, Condorelli utilised the museum’s macro X-ray fluorescence scanning to investigate the fabric of the building itself. Fragments of the wall fabric, floorboards, glass and green marble were scanned in the laboratory, along with images contained in the department’s archive, to create AI-generated composite images. The carpet work, Bulk: Everlasting Colour (2023), enters the collection of RAMM alongside a print, Pentimenti (0751) that draws elements from paintings in the National Gallery collection, playing games that obscure the original subject and focus on sumptuous draperies, framing and peripheral detail instead.

During her residency, Condorelli recognised that RAMM’s 19th-century building shared commonalities with the National Gallery through its materials, institutional history and central location in its city. Mirroring its intervention in the National Gallery, Bulk: Everlasting Colour will occupy the centre of RAMM’s Gallery 20. Alongside Pentimenti (0751), this acquisition offers audiences an alternative way to experience the gallery space, one that is radically different from conventional gallery behaviours.

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