Australian gambling millionaire acquires acclaimed oil installation

Richard Wilson’s 20:50 work will leave the Saatchi Gallery in London, and head for David Walsh’s museum in Tasmania—but may go on a world tour first.

The Australian collector David Walsh has bought the oil installation 20:50 by the UK sculptor Richard Wilson, one of the most talked about art interventions of the past 25 years. The piece will be housed at Walsh’s Museum of Old and New Art (Mona) outside Hobart in Tasmania. The subterranean museum, the largest privately run space in Australia, opened in 2011.

For 20:50, the gallery is filled to waist height with recycled engine oil, from which the piece takes its name. A walkway extends from a single entrance, leading the viewer into the space until they are surrounded by oil on three sides. The surface of the oil mirrors the architecture of the room.

This wonderful work was a highlight of our first trip to the Saatchi Gallery many years ago, and we enjoy it on every visit.  Read on …


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