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Constructing the art of chance – Bankside Logistics group answers the call

Abraham Cruzvillegas, Empty Lot – Tate Modern Hyundai Commission 2015
  • Hyundai commission 2015: Abraham Cruzvillegas: Empty Lot

Have you been into the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern recently? Go again, before 3 April, and you will see something remarkable. Seen from above the lattice of triangular wooden plots seems to float above the floor. From beneath, the structure that simultaneously grounds and supports them is very apparent. These really are “raised beds”.

If you had seen Empty Lot early on there was nothing much to distinguish one small plot from another. Now, green shoots are springing up, haphazardly, across the artwork. This element of chance is precisely what the artist Abraham Cruzvillegas planned for this inaugural Hyundai Commission. Bringing soil into the manmade landscape from different parks across London including Peckham, Haringey and Westminster, he could not know or control what might grow where. Nothing has been planted in the soil, but with a combination of lights and watering the soil has produced life anyway.

Abraham Cruzvillegas is known for creating sculptures by improvising with different materials and with work the artist is asking “questions about the city and nature, as well as wider ideas of chance, change, and hope”.

But this construction in the art of chance has a second connection to Bankside too. Last September Dan Taylor, Regeneration Programme Manager at Southwark Council sent a call out to the members of Bankside and London Bridge Logistics Group for surplus materials that could be used in the Tate Modern work. The Brookfield Multiplex team at One Blackfriars was one of the projects that answered the call. Now their surplus timber has found a new lease of life, quite literally.