Gavin Turk  (British, 1967) 

Gavin Turk (British, b.1967) is a sculptor and photographer. He studied at the Royal College of Art in London from 1989 to 1991, but he did not graduate due to a controversial show called Cave. The show consisted of a white room and a commemorative plaque honoring the fact that Turk himself had worked in the room. He is considered a member of the Young British Artists, a movement known for its warehouse shows, shock value tactics, and popular appeal.

Turk works primarily in bronze and wax sculptures, although he makes forays into photography and silkscreen. One of his better known sculptures is Nomad, a bronze sculpture of a sleeping bag painted to look real. He is also known for a series of silkscreens mimicking popular posters of Che Guevara that feature the artist's own partially disguised face.

Turk owes much of his initial success to the patronage of noted art collector Charles Saatchi (British, b. June 9, 1943). Saatchi both collected Turk's work and included it in the seminal exhibition Sensation in 1997. Turk's work is sometimes borrowed from artists such as Andy Warhol (American, 1928–1987) and Yves Klein (French, 1928–1962). These influences, however, appear to be incidental and relate more to the specific pieces Turks selects than the artists that created them.

His works demonstrate an ongoing preoccupation with the philosophical idea of authenticity, the meaning of authorship, the role of celebrity in art, and the nature of originality. This preoccupation with authorship and the role of celebrity in art manifests itself in Turk's frequent use of his own image in place of iconic celebrities, such as Elvis. His works have been displayed in museums and galleries across much of Western Europe, including the Museum of Contemporary Arts in the Netherlands, the South London Gallery in England, the Almine Rech Gallery in Paris, and the Aruel Scheibler Gallery in Berlin. Turk maintains an online gallery of his work on his official website. The artist lives and works in London.

Find Gavin Turk artworks for sale worldwide, artworks that sold at auction, a detailed biography, and more information on the artist below.
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Gavin Turk, Nomad


Gavin Turk

Ben Brown Fine Arts
Gavin Turk, Double Silver Pop Gun


Gavin Turk
Double Silver Pop Gun

Paul Stolper
Gavin Turk, Double Gold Pop Gun


Gavin Turk
Double Gold Pop Gun

Paul Stolper
Gavin Turk, Sneer (Yellow)


Gavin Turk
Sneer (Yellow)

Paul Stolper
Gavin Turk, Sneer (Lilac)


Gavin Turk
Sneer (Lilac)

Paul Stolper
Gavin Turk, GT 2013


Gavin Turk
GT 2013
Moniker Projects
Gavin Turk, Transit Disaster Beige


Gavin Turk
Transit Disaster Beige

Patricia Low Contemporary
Gavin Turk, Transit Disaster Green


Gavin Turk
Transit Disaster Green

Patricia Low Contemporary
Gavin Turk, Small Transit Disaster Pink


Gavin Turk
Small Transit Disaster Pink

Patricia Low Contemporary
Past auction results (124)  View All
Gavin Turk, Bag


Gavin Turk
Bag, 2000
painted bronze


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Gavin Turk, Nomad


Gavin Turk
Nomad, 2003
painted bronze


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Gavin Turk, The Pedigree of Man


Gavin Turk
The Pedigree of Man, 2010
baked bread on wood on plywood


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1967   Born in Guildford, Scotland, UK
1991   Graduated, Royal College of Art
  Lives and works in London
  Royal Academy Summer Exhibition Jack Goldhill Sculpture Prize
2010   Pop Life, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany
2010   Banners of Persuasion Demons, Yarns & Tales, James Cohan Gallery, New York
2009   The Mirror Stage, Goodman Gallery, South Africa (solo)
2009   Galleri Veggerby, Copenhagen (solo)
2009   Turkey Foil, ScheiblerMitte, Berlin (solo)
2009   Gavin Turk Ltd., Paul Stolper Gallery, London (solo)
2009   Jazzz, Sean Kelly Gallery, New York (solo)
2009   Pop Life, Tate Modern, London
2009   53. Venice Biennale, Italy
2008   You Know I Know He Knows We Know, Aeroplastics, Brussels (solo)
2008   Burnt Out, Kunsthaus Baselland, Switzerland (solo)
2008   Piss Off, Galerie Krinzinger, Vienna (solo)
2007   Citadel 1. Front room/Killing room, David Risley Gallery, London
2007   The Freak Show, Musée d'Art Contemporain de Lyon, Lyon
2007   Galerie Trafó, Budapest
2007   Timer.01: Intimacy, Triennale Bovisa, Milan
2007   Pure, Sean Kelly, New York
2007   Draw, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, Middlesbrough
2007   GAVIN TURK: ‘Me as Him’, Riflemaker, London (solo)
2007   The Negotiation of Purpose, GEM Museum of Contemporary Art, The Hague; MAGASIN Centre National d'Art Contemporain, Grenoble (solo)
2006   Waste not, Want not, Galleri Veggerby, Copenhagen (solo)
2006   The Font Project, Fine Art Society, London (solo)
2006   Last Year in Eggenberg (The Paradise Show), Schloss Eggenberg, Graz (solo)
2006   In the darkest hour there may be light: Works from Damien Hirst’s murderme collection, Serpentine Gallery, London
2006   Summer Exhibition 2006, Royal Academy, London
2006   Six Feet Under: Autopsy of Our Relation to the Dead, Kunstmuseum Bern, Bern
2006   Darkness Visible, Ferens Art Gallery, Hull
2006   World Cup, 39, London
2006   In Between, Galeria Presenca, Porto
2006   Space Cavern Expérience Pommery 3, Cave pommery, Reims
2006   Stage of Life – Rhetorics of Emotion, Lenbachhaus, Munich
2006   Youth of Today, Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt
2006   William Ling Fine Art, 18 Fremont Street, London
2006   Culture Bound, The Courtauld Institute, London
2005   Et Maintenant - What Now, Crac Alsace, Altkirch
2005   The Drawing Show, Shangri-La tattoo Parlour, London
2005   Superstars! The Celebrity Factor. From Warhol to Madonna, Kunsthalle wien, Vienna
2005   My Beauty Picture Show, 21 Tudor Grove E9, London
2005   M-City, Kunsthaus Graz, Austria
2005   Appearance, Whitehall Waterfront, Leeds
2005   Art Out of Place, Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, Norwich
2005   Summer Exhibition 2005, Royal Academy, London
2005   London Calling. Y[oung] B[ritish] A[rtists] Criss-Crossed, Galleri Kaare Berntsen, Oslo
2005   Ha ha ha!, Galerie Almine Rech, Paris (solo)
2005   Melange, Galerie Krinzinger, Vienna (solo)
2005   White Elephant, Sean Kelly, New York (solo)
2005   25th Annual Series of the ICI New York Studio Events, New York
2005   The Stuff of Life, Bristol’s City Museum & Art Gallery, Bristol / Laing Gallery, Newcastle / National Gallery, London
2004   Chaim Soutine, Happy Sailor, London
2004   The Christmas Exhibition 2004, Edinburgh Printmakers, Edinburgh
2004   Art 4 All, Tea Building, London
2004   The (de) Construction of Living, Odapark Foundation, The Netherlands
2004   Paper Democracy. Contemporary Art in Editions on Paper, Edifício Cultura Inglesa, São Paulo
2004   Printers Inc.: Recent British Prints, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester / Brewhouse Theatre and Arts Centre, Taunton / Park Gallery, Falkirk
2004   Emotion Eins, Ursula Blickle Foundation, Kraichtal / Kunstverein Frankfurt, Frankfurt
2004   Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London
2004   Gavin Turk: Faces, Edinburgh Printmakers, Edinburgh (solo)
2004   Faces: A Print Portfolio by Gavin Turk, Paul Stolper, London (solo)
2004   The Golden Thread, White Cube, London; Sculpture at Goodwood (solo)
2004   Domestic (f)utility, New Art Centre Sculpture Park and Gallery, Salisbury
2004   Mike Kelley: The Uncanny, Tate Liverpool, Liverpool
2003   Bag Lady, Cell Project Space, London
2003   The Art of Reinvention, Hotbath Gallery, Bath
2003   Sculpture, London Institute Gallery, London
2003   Artlab Especial, Mobile Home, London
2003   Group Show, Mobile Home, London
2003   FRESH: Contemporary British Artists in Print, Edinburgh Printmakers, Edinburgh
2003   The Square Show, Bloomberg Space, London
2003   Identity, Ecology Pavilion, Mile End Park, London
2003   Gavin Turk, Galleri Veggerby, Copenhagen (solo)
2003   Gavin Turk, Oki-ni, Savile Row, London (solo)
2003   Gavin Turk: et in arcadia eggo, New Art Centre Sculpture Park & Gallery, Salisbury (solo)
2003   Gavin Turk In The House, Sherborne House, Dorset (solo)
2003   Spare Change, Contemporary Fine Arts, Berlin (solo)
2003   Independence, South London Gallery, London
2003   Coollustre, Collection Lambert en Avignon
2003   Let’s See the Nature in You, Pepperton Gallery, London
2002   Gavin Turk: Oeuvre, Tate Britain Sculpture Court Display, London (solo)
2002   Copper Jubilee, The New Art Gallery, Walsall (solo)
2002   It’s Unfair, Museum de Pavilijeons, Netherlands
2002   Face Off, Kettles Yard, Cambridge
2002   Second Skin. Historical Life Casting and Contemporary Sculpture, Henry Moore Institute, Leeds
2002   Hommage an Rudolf Schwarzkogler, Galerie Krinzinger, Wien
2002   Remix: Contemporary Art and Pop. Tate Liverpool
2001   Heart of Glass, Mirror, London
2001   Art-Tube 01, Café De Paris, London
2001   East Wing Collection, No. 5. Courtauld Institute of Art, London
2001   Printers inc., The Gallery, Stratford- upon-Avon, England
2001   The Colony Room Club 2001. A Space Oddity, A22 Projects, London
2001   The Che Gavara Story, Residence in the East End of London (solo)
2001   Abbild. Recent Portraiture and depiction, Steirisc[:her:]bst, Landesmuseum, Graz
2001   Teeth and Trousers, Ideal House, London
2001   Tattoo Show, Modern Art, London
2001   Summer Exhibition 2001, Royal Academy of Arts, London
2001   Mind the Gap, Wetterling Gallery, Stockholm
2001   The Saatchi Gallery eyestorm Collection, The Saatchi Gallery, London
2001   Please Disturb Me, Great Eastern Hotel, London
2001   Dead, The Roundhouse, London
2001   Century City, Tate Modern, London
2001   Insider Trading: profit without honour, Mandeville Hotel, London
2000   More Stuff, Centre d’Art Contemporain, Geneva (solo)
2000   Gavin Turk, fig-1, London (solo)
2000   In Memoriam, The New Art Gallery, Walsall
2000   Conversation, Milton Keynes Gallery, Milton Keynes
2000   Ever get the feeling you’ve been…, A22 Projects, London
2000   Warning shots. Contemporary art exploring themes of conflict and violence, Royal Armories Museum, Leeds
2000   Out There, White Cube², Hoxton Square, London
2000   Ant Noises, Saatchi Gallery, London
2000   White Ass European Cowboys, Rob Malasch / Galerie Serieuze Zaken, Amsterdam
2000   Art at the Dome, Greenwich, London
2000   Psycho, Anne Faggionato, London