A Fairground of Art and Ideas at Tate Exchange

Staff and students from the School of Politics and International Relations, especially those teaching and studying on the MA in Politics, Art and Resistance, will be creating a fairground of art and ideas as part of the newly launched Tate Exchange Associates programme (tate.org.uk/tateexchange). Working in close collaboration with colleagues from Whitstable Biennale and People United (organisations based on the Kent campus), Canterbury Christ Church University and Valleys Kids (a community group based in the Rhondda Valley), the Fairground will be created in the Sidney Cooper Gallery, Canterbury and then the Tate Exchange space on Level 5 of the new Switch House at Tate Modern.


The inaugural version of the Fairground will be open to the public at the Sidney Cooper Gallery, Canterbury High Street, from Tuesday 31st January – Saturday 11th February, 2017, 10.30 – 17.00. See here for further details.

The Fairground at Tate Modern will be open to the public from Tuesday 11th – Saturday 15th April, 2017 (12.00 – 18.00, 11-13 April and 12.00-20.00 14-15 April).

Fairgrounds were medieval sites of exchange that enabled traders to buy and sell their goods but that also drew together diverse populations in carnival, excess and play. The component parts of these traditional fairgrounds will be playfully updated and transformed to give a thoroughly contemporary twist on this medieval space of exchange. There will be unusual stalls, unexpected tours, pop-up performances and plenty opportunities to get involved. Be prepared to be challenged, entertained and engaged as the fairground comes to life. And, expect to have a lot of fun as we explore different forms of exchange between art and ideas.

The Associates programme marks the second phase of the annual Tate Exchange programme which opened in September 2016. The first phase involved artist projects which drew the visitor into the museum’s creative process for the first time. Artist highlights included events arranged by the Guerrilla Girls, Raqs Media Collective, Christine Sun Kim, Simone Leigh, Lorraine O’Grady, Rashida Bumbray, Fannie Sosa, Larry Achiampong, David Blandy, Kader Attia and Shannon Jackson and many other artists and collectives.

Anna Cutler, Tate’s Director of Learning said: ‘Tate Exchange marks a shift in the relationship with our visitors. This is an exchange between what the public brings and what we bring to the conversation. Our visitors carry their own culture with them and can use museums and galleries as creative spaces for exploring what that means. Using art in its many forms, the public and Tate Exchange Associates will shine a spotlight on the challenging issues facing the contemporary world.’

For full details of the programme visit tate.org.uk/tateexchange

Further details and comment available from Dr Iain MacKenzie (telephone: 07540 165342 email: i.mackenzie@kent.ac.uk).