Serpentine South Gallery 7 Apr — 10 May 2023 Free

Grenfell by Steve McQueen

In December 2017, artist and filmmaker Steve McQueen (b. 1969, London, UK) made an artwork in response to the fire that took place earlier that year on 14 June at Grenfell Tower in North Kensington, West London. 72 people died in the tragedy. Filming the tower before it was covered with hoarding, McQueen sought to create a record so that it would not be forgotten. Grenfell is presented at Serpentine South this spring.

Following the fire, a Government Inquiry was launched that was conducted in two phases. Four years since the publication of the Phase One report, the recommendations are yet to be implemented, meaning a similar tragedy could happen again. The findings of the second and final phase of the Inquiry are due to be reported in late 2023. There is an ongoing criminal investigation.

Steve McQueen was born in West London in 1969 and studied Fine Art at Goldsmiths College where he first became interested in film. Over the last 30 years, McQueen has been influential in expanding the way in which artists work with film. He has made several feature films with many accolades, including the Academy Award for Best Film for 12 Years a Slave (2013). In 2020, he made Small Axe, an anthology film series about London’s West Indian community. As an artist, McQueen won the Turner Prize in 1999 and represented Great Britain at the Venice Biennale in 2009. McQueen’s work is held and exhibited in public museums around the world. He lives and works in London and Amsterdam.

After its presentation at Serpentine the work is placed in the care of Tate and the Museum of London’s Collection.

Download the exhibition guide here.

Download Steve McQueen statement (Arabic)

Download Steve McQueen statement (Farsi)

Download Paul Gilroy essay (Arabic)

Download Paul Gilroy essay (Farsi)


BY PAUL GILROY Read full essay on Art & Ideas


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