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‘Reckless’ artwork by Mark Wallinger

21 September 2010 by Lisa

Turner's painting with a section cut out

The artwork by Mark Wallinger

Leading on from the video piece by David Shrigley in support of the Save The Arts campaign, a new work by Turner Prize-winning artist Mark Wallinger was released today. This work is part of a campaign supported by over 100 leading British artists against the government’s proposed funding cuts of the arts.

Mark Wallinger’s work shows a copy of Turner’s masterpiece, ‘The Fighting Temeraire’ (1839) by Joseph Mallord William Turner, in the collection of the National Gallery in London. A slash in the painting carries a notice “25% cut” and underneath the work a caption reads: “If 25% were slashed from arts funding the loss would be immeasurable.”

Turner referred to The Fighting Temeraire as “his darling”, refusing to ever sell it until he finally donated it to the National Gallery. When the nation was asked by the BBC to nominate the greatest painting on show in the UK’s museums and galleries it came first with 25% of the votes.

The title of Mark Wallinger’s new work is ‘Reckless’. He explains: “I describe the cuts as a reckless adventure. In fact temeraire means reckless in French and by removing the obsolete ship from the scene I am rendering the painting wreckless.”

Each week the work of a different artist, created in response to the campaign, will be released. Look out for the next one on this blog. If you would like to support the Save The Arts campaign, visit their website here.

We have several works by Turner in our collections and we also have a petition against potential cuts. Over 15,000 people have already signed. Please support us and add your name to our online petition here.

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