Bite size: In conversation with Kimberley Cumberbatch, Assistant Curator at Royal Museums Greenwich and Emma Philip, Senior Curator at The Box, as part of the Kehinde Wiley exhibition

Kehinde Wiley Narrenschiff, 2017. Three-channel digital film. Duration: 16.40 minutes. Edition of 5 + 2AP. Installation view: Kehinde Wiley: In Search of the Miraculous, solo exhibition, Stephen Friedman Gallery (2017–2018). Copyright Kehinde Wiley. Courtesy Stephen Friedman Gallery, London. Photo by Mark Blower. 

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What is a ‘ship of fools’ exactly, and where does the idea come from? How can the maritime function as a metaphor for human experiences in art more generally? 

Join Kimberley Cumberbatch, Assistant Curator at Royal Museums Greenwich and Emma Philip, Senior Curator at The Box, as they discuss Kehinde Wiley's painting Ship of Fools

The painting was acquired for the Royal Museums Greenwich collection in 2018, and is currently on loan to The Arts Institute as part of the exhibition Kehinde Wiley: Ship of Fools. Created by Wiley as part of a body of seascapes and responding to those of J.M.W Turner, Winslow Homer, and Hieronymous Bosch, Ship of Fools is a departure from the highly patterned, vibrant portraits for which the artist is widely known. Responding to the epic and romantic traditions of maritime painting, Wiley simultaneously addresses contemporary political and social concerns – the fragility of life at sea as a metaphor for the constant need to keep our ship of humanity afloat. Normally exhibited in the Kings Presence Chamber at Greenwich, we’ll discover what this painting means to the national collection and to the audiences who see it hanging there. 

Date: 25 November 2020
Time: 13:00
Free to access online – book your place

Once you have booked your place you will receive a link to access this event online. 

If you have any queries or require any additional information about attending this online event please do not hesitate to contact The Arts Institute team

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Today's events

Kehinde Wiley: Ship of Fools

The Levinsky Gallery unfortunately remains temporarily closed until further notice in line with Tier 3 government guidelines.

29 September 2020–24 January 2021
When confronted with large bodies of water, a duality is often experienced: we are in fact at once attracted to but also frightened by the unknown.

New York-based artist Kehinde Wiley's mode of enquiry, and his interest in the portrayal and modulation of power will be explored through the works on show, which also include paintings and sculpture. The exhibition aims to investigate the ways in which the artist masterfully uses traditional representation to challenge power relations and art historical norms. Curated by The Box in partnership with The Arts Institute and Royal Museums Greenwich.

Find out more and plan your visit

Kehinde Wiley, Narrenschiff, 2017, Three-channel digital film. Duration: 16.40 minutes. Copyright Kehinde Wiley. Courtesy of Stephen Friedman Gallery

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