Alan Krell: Burning Issues

Fire as a strong painter

Peter Hill

 

Burning Issues: Fire in Art and the Social Imagination
by Alan Krell
Reaktion Books (UNSW Press), $54.95 hb, 224 pp, 9781861898562

 

On the evening of 24 May 2004, fire destroyed hundreds of works of art stored in Momart’s warehouse in Leyton, East London. (An arsonist was reputedly to blame.) Among those lost were Tracey Emin’s notorious tent, entitled Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963–1995, Jake and Dinos Chapman’s Hell, and Chris Ofili’s Afrobluff. Valued at around $100 million, whole collections, including Charles Saatchi’s, were destroyed.

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