Royal Academy of Arts Exhibition Design – “Sensation: Young British Artists from the Saatchi Collection”

DESIGN

Sophie Hicks - Exhibition Design: “Sensation: Young British Artists from the Saatchi Collection”
Royal Academy of Arts,  London, UK
September to December 1997

The definitive and controversial exhibition which established the group known as the YBA’s (Young British Artists) and made artists such as Damien Hirst, the Chapman Brothers and Tracy Emin household names. Our involvement was to design a setting for the art. We chose to provide a background which would give minimal interference and maximum contrast to the artworks. The main galleries of the Royal Academy were stripped of any recent architectural additions and returned to their original state. Lowered ceilings were removed to reveal the gilt cornices, and natural light from the skylights was used, boosted only with electric light. Signage was deliberately basic. The result was that the show did not look as if it had been designed, which was the point.