White Cube

White Cube

White Cube is one of the most prominent contemporary commercial art galleries in the world.Fact|date=November 2007 It is based in Hoxton Square in the East End of London. It represents Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin and many other internationally-recognised artists.


White Cube is owned and run by the art dealer Jay Jopling (an ex-Etonian and son of a Conservative MP) who is married to artist Sam Taylor-Wood. It was first opened in a small, square room in May 1993 in Duke Street, St. James's, a traditional art dealing street in the West End of London. In that location there was a gallery rule that an artist could only be exhibited once. The gallery achieved its reputation by being the first to give one person shows to many of the Young British Artists (YBAs), including Tracey Emin.

It moved to one of its two present larger premises in April 2000. The 1920s building in Hoxton Square had previously been occupied by the small publishing company Gerald Duckworth & Co., and had once been a piano factory. In 2002 an extra two stories (750 m²) were added by hoisting a prefabricated unit on top of the existing structure.

The Hoxton/Shoreditch area has been popular with the Young British Artists (YBAs) since the 1990s, at which time it was a run-down area of light industry. More recently it has undergone extensive redevelopment with clubs, restaurants and media businesses. Hoxton Square is a prime site with a central area of grass and trees, which the vicinity is mostly lacking.

White Cube previews are open to the public and crowds fill the square on such occasions. Its publicly-accessible interior is a small reception area, which leads onto a 250-m² exhibition area downstairs, two storeys in height. Another smaller exhibition space upstairs often shows a different artist. Offices and a conference room are on the upper floors. On some occasions exhibitions have been installed on the grass of the square, one example being Hirst's large sculpture (22 ft, 6.7 m) "Charity", based on the old Spastic Society's model, which shows a girl in a leg brace holding a charity collecting box.

White Cube also offers artists' editions.

In September 2006, it opened a second site at 25–26 Mason's Yard, off Duke Street, St. James's, home of the original White Cube gallery, on a plot previously occupied by an electricity sub-station. The gallery, designed by MRJ Rundell & Associates, is the first free-standing building to be built in the St James's area for more than 30 years.

The address of White Cube's Hoxton Square site is 48 Hoxton Square, London N1 6PB. The address of White Cube Mason's Yard is 25-26 Mason's Yard, London SW1Y 6BU. Admission to White Cube's galleries is free, and they are open from Tuesday to Saturday, 10 am to 6 pm.


In 1999, the Stuckists art group declared themselves "opposed to the sterility of the white wall gallery system", and opened their own gallery (with coloured walls) in an adjoining street. On another occasion in 2002, while dressed as clowns, they deposited a coffin marked "The Death of Conceptual Art" outside the White Cube's door. [ [http://www.stuckism.com/Tate/WhiteCube.html "White Cube Demo 2002"] , stuckism.com. Retrieved 19 April 2008.] [Cripps, Charlotte. [http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4158/is_20040907/ai_n12797891 "Visual arts: Saying knickers to Sir Nicholas] , "The Independent", 7 September 2004. Retrieved from findarticles.com, 7 April 2008.]

In 2003, Charles Saatchi launched an attack on the concept of the white wall gallery, calling it "antiseptic" and a "time warp ... dictated by museum fashion". [Citation|last=Milner|first=Catherine|title=Saatchi Turns on 'Cliched' Britart Rivals|newspaper=The Daily Telegraph|date=2003-09-27|url=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2003/09/28/nart28.xml.]

Nick Cohen commented on the 2006 Gilbert and George show "Sonofagod Pictures: Was Jesus Heterosexual?" at White Cube, "Last week I went to the East End of London to witness the death of the avant-garde." [cite web|last=Cohen|first=Nick|title=The Rout of the Avant-Garde|url=http://www.nickcohen.net/?p=77|date=2006-02-19|accessdate=2007-03-06]


Artists shown at the gallery include:
*Jake and Dinos Chapman
*Chuck Close
*Gilbert and George
*Antony Gormley
*Marcus Harvey
*Mona Hatoum
*Eberhard Havekost
*Gary Hume
*Anselm Kiefer
*Martin Kobe
*Marc Quinn
*Julie Mehretu
*Doris Salcedo
*Neal Tait
*Sam Taylor-Wood
*Gavin Turk
*Koen Van Den Broek
*Jeff Wall
*Andreas Gursky
*Gabriel Orozco

ee also

* Brian O'Doherty and Alexx Shaw, writers on white cube philosophy


External links

* [http://www.whitecube.com/ White Cube official web site]
* [http://www.artfacts.net/index.php/pageType/instInfo/inst/771 List of shows at White Cube]

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