15 Jul 2016

Sea Of Hull makes a splash on world stage

The world got an eyeful of Hull this weekend when more than 3,200 people stripped naked and painted themselves blue … all in the name of art.

The installation by artist Spencer Tunick is called Sea Of Hull, and it has been making positive headlines in every corner of the globe.

Stunning images and reports of thousands of bare, blue bodies lining the city’s streets have placed Hull in the media spotlight in the UK, Ireland, France, Belgium, Germany, China, India, Malaysia, the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Ghana and even further afield through social media.

Spencer Tunick said: “The Sea Of Hull installation was one of the most fantastic projects I’ve ever done, and it was inspiring to be able to intertwine the city’s maritime heritage against an urban backdrop throughout the whole piece. It’s always wonderful to see the various-sized people covered in paint, walking through the streets of a city I admire. I’m looking forward to the exhibition of my final works made here in Hull, in the spring of 2017.”

Sea Of Hull was commissioned by the Ferens Art Gallery, and four shades of blue body paint were used to reflect colours in its existing collections. It will be a programme highlight at the gallery when it reopens after a major spruce-up in 2017, as part of UK City of Culture.

It is the first major commission to be revealed for 2017. Although Spencer Tunick is renowned for his mass nude photographs, this latest one in Hull drew in the most participants of any of his UK works of art – beating Gateshead in 2005 and Salford in 2010.

It seems Hull UK City of Culture 2017, really does offer something for everybody.

Events officer Helen Thackeray tells us what it’s been like to organise this unique event: “From my point of view this has been a huge challenge as it was such a complex event involving so many departments and partners, I will be forever grateful for the help and support that we have received as the events team for this project, every department I have called have had a real can do attitude and have pulled out all of the stops. Special mention has to go to the people who look after planting the Rosebowl and the Streetcare teams as the city looked amazing and their tremendous efforts really showed in the final product.”

“The comments we have received post event are amazing and I really feel honoured to have worked with Kirsten and her team on such a record breaking event.”

Anna Marshall, media officer, gives her take on working with the media for Sea of Hull: “Leading on the media was a huge but exciting challenge for me and has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career so far. I have been privileged to work on such an amazing project with a small team of people from the events team and Ferens Art Gallery. It was a huge success for us, the artist and the participants.

I have been overwhelmed by the level of media coverage the installation has generated internationally and worldwide, creating a real buzz for the city I love. The feedback from the media and participants has been phenomenal, saying they will come back to this great city. If this is a glimpse of what to expect in the coming months and in 2017, we have some really exciting times ahead.”

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