Yinka Shonibare CBE RA: Space Walk, 2002

January 22, 2014–March 17, 2014

Yinka Shonibare, in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Space Walk, 2002.
Yinka Shonibare, in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Space Walk, 2002. Pigment on cotton sateen and cotton brocade, fiberglass, resin, plastic. 264 x 168 x 168 inches.

While not new to fabric as an artistic medium, Yinka Shonibare CBE RA (b. 1962) had the freedom during his residency at The Fabric Workshop and Museum (FWM) to create custom print designs for the textiles that would clothe figures in an installation. Titled Space Walk, this piece ventured into the new frontier of American exploration—space. In this installation at The New Temporary Contemporary, a man and woman—dressed in brightly colored space suits, and wearing backpacks and helmets—float near a projected image of the Apollo 13 space capsule. Pioneers of space, the couple refashions concepts of expansion, exploration, and potential colonization.

The installation at FWM ran concurrently with the artist’s exhibition at the Barnes Foundation, Yinka Shonibare MBE: Magic Ladders, on view Friday, January 24–Monday, April 21, 2014.


The New Temporary Contemporary
1222 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Artists in This Exhibition

About the Artist

British, born 1962, lives and works in the East End of London.

Yinka Shonibare CBE RA was born in London and raised in Lagos, Nigeria, where his family moved when he was three. He returned to London at the age of 17 to study fine art, first at Byam Shaw College of Art (now Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design), and later for his MFA at Goldsmith’s College, University of London. In 2004, Shonibare was shortlisted for Britain’s prestigious Turner Prize, and in 2005 was bestowed the distinction of Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE). He was received an Honorary Doctorate (Fine Artist) of the Royal College of Art in 2010 and was awarded a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2019, titles now added to his professional name.

A major retrospective of Shonibare’s work was mounted by the MCA Sydney in 2008 and traveled to the Brooklyn Museum and the Museum of African Art at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC. His one-person shows include a major exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem in 2002, and others organized by the Tate Britain in London (2001), The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh (2001), the Victoria and Albert Museum in London (2000), and the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto (1997). His work has been exhibited internationally at the Venice Biennale as well as at Documenta 10 (2002).