Yinka Shonibare MBE, ‘Champagne Kid (Fallen)’, 2013, TAFETA

Champagne Kids (Fallen) (2013) is an archetypal Shonibare sculpture, and features prominently in the booth. A paradoxical depiction of celebration and depravity, the sculpture is a response to the global financial crisis, which began in 2008. Its youthful figure lie on his back with a popping bottle of champagne; Shonibare’s trademark globe rotates in the would-be position of the sculpture’s head. This sphere is adorned with financial data that details the global economic meltdown. The carnivalesque poses of the figures in the Champagne Kids series, of which this piece is a part, present witty and damning commentary on the banking industry while leveraging the theatre, colour and style for which Shonibare is known.

About Yinka Shonibare MBE

Drawing from his own experience growing up in the U.K. and Nigeria, Yinka Shonibare investigates political and social histories related to post-colonialism and globalization, reconfiguring iconic imagery from the Western art-historical canon with a playful and ironic touch. Working in sculpture, film, photography, and painting, Shonibare is best known for his tableaux of characters dressed in spectacular period costumes made from batik (an Indonesian-designed fabric that is produced in the Netherlands but has become popularly assimilated in West Africa). In Odile and Odette (2005) a film made in collaboration with London’s Royal Opera, Shonibare re-imagines a classical episode from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake as a complex and subtle interplay between two dancers of different races. Mirroring each other’s expressions on either side of an ornate Baroque frame, Shonibare suggests that their movements are at once estranged and united.

British-Nigerian, b. 1962, London, United Kingdom, based in Lagos, Nigeria