Stephen Chambers

The Big Country and Other Stories

May 7 - July 20, 2014

Stephen Chambers: The Big Country and Other Stories exhibition, curated by Edith Devaney, Curator of Contemporary Projects at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, presented a survey of Stephen Chambers’ painting and graphic works, shown alongside his vast multi-part print, The Big Country.

This selection sought to explore the origins of The Big Country (2012), demonstrating that its development is firmly rooted in the artist’s past practice and deeply indebted to the European tradition of art. The sense of a story being told is a feature of many of Chambers’ works, and writings are often a stimulus for this, as seen in Chambers’ Flemish Proverbs series, which are also exhibited.

Inspired by the landscape and scale of the American Western film The Big Country (1958), Chambers’ immense work explores a myriad of fictional encounters between real and imagined historical figures. The notion of the journey and discovery of new lands has here expanded into a depiction of the five continents and the points of departure from one continent to another, raising a fascinating take on the perils and challenges of migration. 

Stephen Chambers is primarily a painter; however printmaking has always formed a significant part of his work. He has noted in the past that prints produced by artists whose main discipline is not printmaking, can often be the most compelling. For such artists, print-making offers another element of expression and provides an opportunity to experiment, a notion which is borne out in Chambers’ finished monumental work.

The exhibition was organized by the Royal Academy of Arts, London, with the Pera Museum. Contribution by British Consulate-General, Istanbul and British Council.


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Stephen Chambers

Stephen Chambers

Organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London, in collaboration with the Pera Museum, Stephen Chambers: The Big Country and Other Stories exhibition presented a journey to the artist’s...

“Stephen Chambers in Conversation”

“Stephen Chambers in Conversation”

Video

The Big Country

The Big Country

When the Royal Academy of Arts offered Stephen Chambers the opportunity to produce new work for a focused exhibition in the Weston Rooms of the Main Galleries, Chambers turned to print and the possibilities it offered.

From two portraits of children…

From two portraits of children…

The Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation’s Orientalist Painting Collection includes two children’s portraits that are often featured in exhibitions on the second floor of the Pera Museum. These portraits both date back to the early 20th century, and were made four years apart. One depicts Prince Abdürrahim Efendi, son of Sultan Abdulhamid II, while the figure portrayed on the other is Nazlı, the daughter of Osman Hamdi Bey.

Artist Nicola Lorini in Conversation

Artist Nicola Lorini in Conversation

Inspired by its Anatolian Weights and Measures Collection, Pera Museum presents a contemporary video installation titled For All the Time, for All the Sad Stones at the gallery that hosts the Collection. The installation by the artist Nicola Lorini takes its starting point from recent events, in particular the calculation of the hypothetical mass of the Internet and the weight lost by the model of the kilogram and its consequent redefinition, and traces a non-linear voyage through the Collection.