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Crown Fine Art was recently enlisted to assist Turner Contemporary with the installation of its spring 2015 exhibition ‘Self: Image and Identity’.

The exhibition presents more than 100 artist self-portraits from the sixteenth-century to the present day, from Sir Anthony van Dyck and JMW Turner to recent work by Louise Bourgeois and Yinka Shonibare.  The exhibition explores the diverse ways in which artists have chosen to represent themselves and their identities through painting, drawing, sculpture, photography and film.

More than 70 works from the National Portrait Gallery will be showcased alongside key twentieth-century and contemporary self-portraits from public and private international collections for an expansive look at the self-portraiture genre.

In January 2015, our team carefully assisted Turner Contemporary with the transportation and installation of a selection of key artworks from private lenders.

With a short time frame of a week to get the exhibition ready for the opening, our technicians assisted Turner Contemporary’s team onsite with unloading vehicles and the extensive preparation work around the exhibition space.



One of the main challenges our team at Crown Fine Art faced was transporting Damien Hirst’s substantial vitrine piece ‘Contemplating a Self-Portrait as a pharmacist’ from Munich to the UK.

The very large piece featuring painted steel, wood and glass required expert care at all stages of the move because of its size, weight and fragility.

Other challenges included, installing a bronze Louise Bourgeois sculpture with a very delicate surface, comprising a silver nitrate patina with highlights.

The technicians transported and hung several Louise Bourgeois 1930’s portraits and carefully installed a bronze enamel John Davies sculpture to enable visitors to see the stunning piece from all angles.

By carefully handling and skilfully moving fragile pieces out of crates and on to protective plastic or foam stands, the technicians were able to ensure their safety and effective display.

Elena Calin, Development Assistant at the Turner Contemporary said: “Turner Contemporary stages exhibitions annually which exhibit major works on loan from both national and international private and public collections. During the exhibition installation period, Turner Contemporary works closely with Crown Fine Art as they offer both a professional and reliable service that ensures the transportation of artworks is carried out with the upmost skill and precision”.

All the work on assisting with the transport, unpacking and installation of the art-works was successfully completed by Crown Fine Art in time for the new exhibition. 

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