July 2, 2011 - The Fruitmarket Gallery - The Fruitmarket Gallery presents Martin Creed at Edinburgh’s Scotsman Steps
July 2, 2011

The Fruitmarket Gallery presents Martin Creed at Edinburgh's Scotsman Steps

Martin Creed Work No.1059, 2011

New Commission for the Scotsman Steps by The Fruitmarket Gallery
Across the road from The Fruitmarket Gallery on
Market Street, Edinburgh
www.fruitmarket.co.uk
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The Fruitmarket Gallery is proud to have commissioned a new work of public sculpture by Turner-Prize winning Scottish artist Martin Creed for Edinburgh’s historic Scotsman Steps. Work 1059 is a feast for the eyes—104 steps leading from the Scotsman Hotel on North Bridge to Waverley Station and The Fruitmarket Gallery on Market Street, each step clad in a different colour of marble. The work has been supported through the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund for Edinburgh Art Festival, as well as several generous individual and corporate donations.

Martin Creed is an artist of international reputation, who makes work of the highest quality. His work is generous, direct and convincing, with an economy of means that belies the complexity of its affect. In 2001, he won the Turner Prize with Work No. 227: The lights going on and off. His recent exhibition Down Over Up at The Fruitmarket Gallery was one of the highlights of the 2010 Edinburgh Art Festival, with over 60,000 visitors and an extremely positive press and popular reaction.

The Scotsman Steps were built in 1899 as part of the ‘Scotsman Building’ for the Scotsman newspaper. The Steps are contained in an octagonal stone tower and form a pedestrian link between Edinburgh’s old and new towns. The Steps were somewhat dilapidated, and have been refurbished by Edinburgh City Council and Edinburgh World Heritage. Creed’s sculpture is a key addition to the refurbishment.

Work 1059 sees Creed re-surfacing the Scotsman Steps with different and contrasting types of marble from all over the world, creating a visually spectacular, beautiful and thoughtful response to this historic artery. Creed describes the project as a microcosm of the whole world—stepping on the different marble steps is like walking through the world, the new staircase dramatising Edinburgh’s internationalism and contemporary significance while recognising and respecting its historical importance. This is both a typical Creed idea, involving as it does the direct engagement of the public in a work whose simplicity belies its conceptual and architectural complexity, and an appropriate response to the particular situation of the Steps. Built into the fabric of Edinburgh, this new work will become a new and joyful part of the experience of the city for both inhabitants and visitors alike.

Fiona Bradley, Director of The Fruitmarket Gallery said:
The Fruitmarket Gallery is proud to have commissioned this beautiful and thoughtful sculpture, making art of internationally-recognised quality part of the everyday lives of residents of and visitors to Edinburgh.

Martin Creed was born in Wakefield and brought up in Glasgow. He studied art at the Slade School of Art at University College London from 1986 to 1990.


The Steps are now open to the public, 7 days a week from 6am–10pm. They can be found across the road from The Fruitmarket Gallery on Market Street, Edinburgh and lead up to Northbridge and The Scotsman Hotel.


Martin Creed’s Work No 1059, 2011 is supported through the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund for Edinburgh Art Festival 2010 with a grant of 85,000 GBP. 


Additional support for the project has come from a number of generous individuals: Elizabeth Cowling, Susan and Alistair Duff, Werner Keschner and Catherine Muirden, George and Jacqui Morris, Barry Rosen, in memory of Bruce Lentini and Dorothy Rosen, Jaap Van Lierre, Iwan and Manuela Wirth and The Fruitmarket Gallery Board of Directors.


This project is part of a wider renovation of the steps, which has been undertaken by the City of Edinburgh Council with funding from the Edinburgh World Heritage Trust. Since 2009, repairs have been carried out, retaining much of the original architecture. The work was carried out with around 250,000 GBP funding from the Council and Edinburgh World Heritage. 


To enquire about supporting The Fruitmarket Gallery’s work, 
contact Development Manager Armida Taylor 
E: development@fruitmarket.co.uk
 P: +44 (0) 131 226 8184

The Fruitmarket Gallery presents Martin Creed at Edinburgh's Scotsman Steps
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