Submarine Wharf - new artists announced

Submarine Wharf. Photo: Freek van Arkel
Submarine Wharf. Photo: Freek van Arkel

Press release

Elmgreen & Dragset to create art project in the Submarine Wharf
25 November 2010

In 2011 Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen will once again host an exhibition in Rotterdam’s harbour. The museum and the Port of Rotterdam have chosen Elmgreen & Dragset to create next year’s presentation. The Scandinavian art duo, best known for their Prada shop in the desert at Marfa, Texas, will create a hallucinatory experience in the Submarine Wharf in the summer of 2011. The exact details of the art project will remain confidential until the last minute.
Following the successful exhibition by Atelier Van Lieshout last summer, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen and the Port of Rotterdam have invited Elmgreen & Dragset to transform the Submarine Wharf in the summer of 2011. To maximise the element of surprise, the exact nature of the exhibition will remain under wraps and the former Submarine Wharf will be inaccessible to the public until the opening on 28 May.
Elmgreen & Dragset
This will be Elmgreen & Dragset’sfirst solo exhibition of the Netherlands. Michael Elmgreen (Denmark, 1961) and Ingar Dragset (Norway, 1968) will create an installation that will entirely transform the Submarine Wharf, resulting in a highly alienating effect. It will provide a totally different experience to that of Atelier Van Lieshout’s exhibition Infernopolis.
The internationally respected artists are known for their desert Prada shop and their presentation at the 53rd Venice Biennale, where they transformed two pavilions into an art collectors’ house in which macabre events had occurred. The exhibition will be curated by Nicolette Gast, a member of the Port of Rotterdam’s Art Committee.
Art in the harbour
The Submarine Wharf was built in 1937 and is comparable in size to the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern in London. Last summer Rotterdam-based Atelier Van Lieshout showed a large number of sculptures in the exhibition entitled Infernopolis in the 5000m2 space. More than 20,000 people attended the exhibition. The Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant described it as ‘The undisputed art hit of the summer’.
The Submarine Wharf is one of the Port of Rotterdam’s initiatives to bring a broad public into contact with the harbour and to improve the quality of the harbour area. The Submarine Wharf is part of the former Rotterdamsche Droogdok Maatschappij (RDM) at Heijplaat. The RDM-complex is a pearl in the harbour. This early-twentieth-century industrial heritage is currently being redeveloped with a focus on education, culture and innovative businesses. The Port of Rotterdam and Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen have initiated the ambitious project of inviting contemporary artists with international reputations to create an exhibition or art project in the Submarine Wharf for five years.