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Rebekkah (2012)

Simon Fujiwara

five terracotta-dyed, life-size, cast plaster female figures and video

Leeds Art Gallery

© the artist Photo credit: Leeds Museums and Galleries



Installation, Sculpture, Moving Image


Terracotta, Plaster, Video


7:33 minutes

Accession Number:



Presented by the Contemporary Art Society, 2013

Ownership history:

Purchased from the artist by the Contemporary Art Society, with its Collections Fund (2012-2015); presented to Leeds Art Gallery, 2013
Rebekkah is 16 year old girl from Hackney who was one of the protagonists of the London riots in 2011. She narrowly escaped prosecution for her role in the destruction of public property and looting that took place across London. Instead of facing prosecution Rebekkah was asked by Simon Fujiwara to undertake a unique experiment of social intervention. She was given a two-week journey to China where she experienced first a different culture and visited some of China's most important cultural landmarks. During this time she was given no access to social media sites and was unable to communicate with her peers, giving her time to reflect on her experiences. While in China Rebekkah visited factories where many of the objects she owns or aspires to own (fashion clothing, mobile phones, flat-screen TVs) are produced and witnessed what can be achieved when a massive-scale, national population pulls together towards one common goal: individual improvement through mass production, organisation and hard work.

The trip culminated with a viewing of the Terracotta Warriors, after which Rebekkah was taken to a factory where casts were made of her body to be assembled into modern day versions of the warriors. Rebekkah (2012) feeds into existing narratives within the collection at Leeds Art Gallery and helps to chart the development of life-size figure sculpture and portrait sculpture from the 19th century.

All rights reserved. Any further use will need to be cleared with the rights holder. Permission granted to reproduce for personal and educational use only. Commercial copying, hiring, lending is prohibited. The collection that owns this artwork may have more information on their own website about permitted uses and image licensing options.

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