Yinka Shonibare CBE RA - Whitechapel Gallery Art Icon Charity Auction London Monday, March 15, 2021 | Phillips
  • Description

    Condition reports, Lot descriptions and information in respect of Lots included in this Online-Only Auction have been prepared exclusively by Whitechapel Gallery following Whitechapel Gallery’s assessment of the Lots. Phillips and its staff are not responsible in any way for such statements, representations or opinions or for any other information provided in respect of the Lots, whether by Whitechapel Gallery, on Phillips website or in any other form.

  • Provenance

    Donation courtesy of Yinka Shonibare CBE and Stephen Friedman Gallery

  • Catalogue Essay

    This vibrantly-coloured, hand-sewn textile by Yinka Shonibare CBE is exemplary of the artist’s multi-layered practice, which spans sculpture, installation, photography, film and stitched quilts to explore questions of race, power, colonialism and identity construction. Created using embroidery and appliqué techniques, the textile features the bright Dutch wax fabrics for which Shonibare is best known.

    The work explores what the artist refers to as "two of the most pressing concerns of our time: environmental protection and immigration." Inspired by the Mappa Mundi, the largest medieval map still in existence, Creatures of the Mappa Mundi – Alerion and Satyrs depicts a pair of birds with large, hooked bills along with the tall, humanoid figure of the Satyr. The Mappa Mundi features people and animals created by artists based on the exaggerated tales of travellers returning from far off lands. Shonibare was inspired by “the ability of the Mappa Mundi to still be reflecting our contemporary concerns of fear of the stranger or 'other' which often leads to xenophobia. The depictions of extinct creatures of legend are a reminder that we may yet become extinct if we do not take care of our environment."

    Yinka Shonibare CBE RA (b. 1962) is Whitechapel Gallery’s Art Icon 2021. He is being recognised for his incisive and deeply affecting work which questions the validity of contemporary and national identities within the context of globalisation. He has had numerous solo shows internationally, most recently at M Woods, Beijing (2020), Fukuoka Art Museum, Fukuoka, Japan (2019) and The Royal Academy of Arts, London (2016) with a forthcoming retrospective at Museum der Moderne Salzburg, Salzburg, Austria (2021). His work is in the public collections of the Museum of Modern Art, The Studio Museum, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Arts Council Collection, British Museum and Tate Collection, among others.


Creatures of the Mappa Mundi – Alerion and Satyrs

patchwork, applique, embroidery and Dutch wax on printed cotton textile
131 x 190 cm (51 5/8 x 74 3/4 in.)
Executed in 2018, this work was commissioned by Meadow Arts.

£40,000 - 60,000 


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Whitechapel Gallery Art Icon Charity Auction

Online Auction 15 - 23 March 2021