Steve McQueen: Year 3 @ Tate Britain12.11.2019
Explored through the vehicle of the traditional school class photograph, this vast new artwork is one of the most ambitious portraits of children ever undertaken in the UK. It offers us a glimpse of the capital’s future, a hopeful portrait of a generation to come.
Steve McQueen invited every Year 3 pupil in London to have their photograph taken by a team of specially trained Tate photographers. They included children from state primaries, independent schools, faith schools, special schools, pupil referral units and home-educated pupils.
These class photos are brought together into a single large-scale installation, capturing tens of thousands of Year 3 pupils in a milestone year in their development.
“There’s an urgency to reflect on who we are and our future […] to have a visual reflection on the people who make this city work. I think it’s important and in some ways urgent.”
Running in parallel to the exhibition at Tate Britain, Artangel is staging an outdoor exhibition spanning London’s 33 boroughs, giving the public a glimpse of the future of their city.
Steven Rodney McQueen (born 9 October 1969) is a British artist, film director and screenwriter. For his 2013 film 12 Years a Slave, a historical drama adaptation of an 1853 slave narrative memoir, he won an Academy Award, BAFTA Award for Best Film, and Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Drama, as a producer, and he also received the award for Best Director from the New York Film Critics Circle. McQueen is the first black filmmaker to win an Academy Award for Best Picture. McQueen frequently collaborates with actor Michael Fassbender, who has starred in three of McQueen’s feature films. McQueen’s other feature films are Hunger (2008), a historical drama about the 1981 Irish hunger strike, Shame (2011), a drama about an executive struggling with sex addiction, and Widows (2018), a thriller about a group of women who vow to finish the heist their husbands died attempting.
For his artwork, McQueen has received the Turner Prize, the highest award given to a British visual artist. In 2006 he produced Queen and Country, which commemorates the deaths of British soldiers in Iraq by presenting their portraits as a sheet of stamps. For services to the visual arts, he was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2011.
In April 2014, TIME magazine included McQueen in its annual TIME 100 as one of the “Most Influential People in the World.” In October 2016, McQueen was granted the British Film Institute’s highest honour, the BFI Fellowship.
Exhibition recommended by Aaron Cezar
Aaron is the founding Director of Delfina Foundation, where he develops, curates and oversees its interrelated programme of residencies, exhibitions and public platforms. He has positioned Delfina Foundation as a meeting point and incubator of creative talent, forming partnerships with leading institutions internationally. Independently and through Delfina Foundation, he has sat on numerous boards, committees and advisory groups such as All Change Arts, Shubbak, Davidoff Art Initiative, Caspian Arts Foundation, the Young Arab Theatre Fund, the Marrakech Biennale, Art Brussels, Crossroads Art Fair, and Alserkal Avenue. He has been a jury member for a number of awards, including the Jarman Award (2012), LIVE WORKS Performance Act Award (Vol.4 – 2016), and many others. In 2017, he was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the Royal College of Arts.