for NGV triennial 2020, faye toogood brings her own designs for furniture, lighting, scenography, sculpture, and large-scale tapestries in dialogue with seventeenth-century artworks from the NGV collection. titled ‘downtime: daytime, candlelight, moonlight’, the installation comprises three designed and curated spaces, each alluding to the lighting effects present in the historical artworks. using her own innovative designs as a connecting device to the past, the british designer plunges visitors deep into a period sensibility that witnessed the birth of capitalism and the enlightenment.all images (unless otherwise stated): installation view of faye toogood’s work ‘downtime: daylight, candlelight, moonlight’ 2020 on display in NGV triennial 2020 © faye toogood. all photos by tom ross
faye toogood has designed three spaces for her installation, ‘downtime: daylight, candlelight, moonlight’, at the NGV triennial 2020. each space alludes to the qualities of light and the cycle of day to night present in the historical artworks on display. at the same time, toogood creates a dialogue between her own designs and the selection of works from NGV’s seventeenth-century flemish, dutch and british galleries.
the first space, ‘daylight’, creates a dialogue between historical landscape and still-life paintings, toogood’s crystal furniture and her monumental ‘day tapestry’, which features an assemblage of flora and agricultural produce tumbling against a backdrop of land and sky. next, ‘candlelight’ invites visitors in a surreal, salon-style interior, quickly sketched, as if in a dream state, with toogood’s hand-painted wall scenography as the backdrop. this space captures the lighting qualities seen in the portraiture by rembrandt, de vries and hanneman, while the designer’s ‘family bust’ sculptures, conceived at the meeting point of abstraction and figuration, occupy center stage.
‘moonlight’, the last space, brings toogood’s ‘downtime’ installation to a luminous and reflective close. dissolving into darkness, ‘night tapestry’ acts as a melancholic backdrop to her furniture and lighting designs, alongside seventeenth-century silverware, furniture and prints. in the video below, you can see faye toogood reflect on her practice and work presented in the exhibition with NGV’s curator of contemporary design and architecture simone leamon.
installation view of faye toogood ‘family bust no. 4’ 2020 and ‘candlelight scenography / 35 hand painted wall hangings’ 2020 on display in NGV triennial 2020 © faye toogood