Paul Noble - NOBSON

Paul Noble, Ye Olde Ruin (detail), 2003-2004. Pencil on paper. Collection: Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Purchase with the support of: Mondriaan Fonds and Stichting Van Beuningen/Peterich-fonds.

Press release

Paul Noble - NOBSON
14 June - 21 September 2014

‘A heavenly hell, a hellish heaven, and lots of strangely shaped people having sex in public’, is how the British newspaper The Guardian describes Paul Noble’s imaginary world. In the summer of 2014 Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen brings together the entire Nobson Nobseen series for the first time, giving visitors a chance to explore the full madness of one of Britain’s most admired draftsmen.

Measuring up to 40m2, the highly refined pencil drawings of Paul Noble (1963, GB) give free rein to the imagination. Next summer visitors to Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen will have the first opportunity to see the entire body of works that make up Noble’s invented metropolis ‘Nobson Newtown’. The series of drawings and sculptures is spread across museums and private collections throughout the world. Since 2004 Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen has acquired two works from the series. The remaining works will be lent specially for the occasion. The major summer exhibition ‘Paul Noble - NOBSON’ will be shown in the museum’s Bodon Galleries, which have previously hosted successful exhibitions of work by Carsten Höller, Marijke van Warmerdam and, most recently, Jan van Eyck.

Nobson is a strange world, inspired by the grey skies of Whitley Bay, the seaside resort in the north of England where Paul Noble grew up. He has worked for more than seventeen years on this fantasy world of ruins, rocks and hidden divine figures. Nobson Newtown is a city of extremes, of cartoon-like events and insanity, born in the mind of this 50-year-old boy.

Exhibition in Rotterdam
The exhibition will be installed by the artist himself, who already has an idea of how to fit together the pieces of the puzzle. Some of Noble’s drawings reach the ceiling and offer a 45-degree perspective. The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication with essays by authors including Paul Kempers. ‘Paul Noble - NOBSON’ is made possible with the generous support of the Ammodo Foundation.

Turner Prize
Noble’s work has been shown at Tate, London (1999), the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY (2003) and Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen (2005). In 2012 Noble was nominated for the prestigious Turner Prize. He lives and works in London.

Drawings collection
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen has one of the richest collections of old master drawings in Europe, with masterpieces by Italian, German, Dutch and French artists. The museum’s collection of contemporary drawings has a strong focus on surreal imagery.

Also on view
In the summer of 2014 Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen will host an exhibition of contemporary Chinese art and a new artist will take over the Willem Van der Vorm Gallery as part of the series ‘Sensory Spaces’.