Provocateur. Innovator. Icon. This winter, Museums Sheffield plays host to the city's very first exhibition of work from one of the most significant photographers of the 20th century, Robert Mapplethorpe. The exhibition comes to the Graves Gallery as part of ARTIST ROOMS On Tour with The Art Fund, a nationwide initiative designed to show the new national art collection established through the generosity of Sheffield-born collector, Anthony d'Offay at venues across the UK.
Born in 1946, American artist Robert Mapplethorpe produced some of the most striking images of the last 50 years. Garnering fame and notoriety in equal measure for the often challenging nature of his photographs, Mapplethorpe's celebrated body of work spans acclaimed depictions of the male form, delicate flower studies, enduring celebrity images and vivid documentation of his native New York's underground scene. ARTIST ROOMS features over 35 of Mapplethorpe's works from the 1970s and 80s, including career-spanning self portraits and iconic photographs of Patti Smith, Andy Warhol, Truman Capote and Marianne Faithfull.
Throughout 2009, 18 museums and galleries across the UK showed over 30 ARTIST ROOMS from the collection created by the dealer and collector, Anthony d'Offay, and acquired by the nation in February 2008. This is the first time a national collection has been shared and shown simultaneously across the UK, and has only been made possible through the exceptional generosity of independent charity The Art Fund and, in Scotland, of the Scottish Government.