Winner of the Turner Prize, and author of over fifty solo exhibitions since his career began in earnest a little over a decade ago, Simon Starling is one of the bright lights in European art. Part of this is due to his earnest desire to reverse centuries of colonialism and economic malfeasance stemming from the very cultural location he himself comes from. Many of his works address themes of trade, barter, and the transformation of material goods from one medium to another. This alchemical process has taken varied shapes, some of them very witty. He has worked with sheds that turn into boats that turn into sheds, with bicycles crossing deserts, with a boat that fed upon itself until it was nothing more than a few sticks of driftwood, leaving its two sailors in the sea, or with lamps of varying Modernist designs. The telescopic meaning packages Starling creates often start with an economic, cultural, or design artifact, which is then layered with forms, each of which tells a further story. Starling's influences are as diverse as Gordon Matta-Clark and Bas Jan Ader, but his work has a quirky uniqueness unmistakably his own. His deft swiping of icons of design is an utterly contemporary idiom unique to Starling's generation.
Born in 1966, Epsom, UK
Lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark and Berlin, Germany
Simon Starling's exhibitions have taken place at tate Britain, London (2013); Thyssen-Bornemisza Contemporary, Vienna (2012); The Power Plant, Toronto (2008); Museum Folkwang, Essen (2007); Kunstmuseum Basel (2005); Museum of Modern Art, Sydney (2002); Portikus, Frankfurt (2002); UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2002); Kunstverein Hamburg (2001); Vienna Secession (2001), Museu Serralves, Porto (2000); Camden Arts Centre, London (1998); and Moderna Museet, Stockholm (1998), among others.