Robert Therrien

RED ROOM (2000-2007)

About this artwork

The installation ‘RED ROOM’ includes 890 different red items ranging from a harmonium organ and a fake stove to kitchen utensils and clothing, all tightly and carefully organised into a small closet. Collected over seven years, objects that hold private significance to the artist, such as his brother’s summer-camp sweatshirt, are placed alongside more generic pieces, all linked by the same tone of red. The colour red holds many connotations, from blood to roses, and from Christmas to Valentines. Here, the intense colour also suggests the saturation of an abstract painting, yet also provokes an uncanny and unsettling experience given the domestic nature of the interior and objects.

  • title: RED ROOM
  • accession number: AR00702
  • artist: Robert TherrienAmerican (born 1947)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Sculpture
  • date created: 2000-2007
  • measurements: 243.84 x 195.60 x 266.70 cm
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
  • copyright: © Robert Therrien
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Robert Therrien

Robert Therrien

The American artist Therrien is renowned for his large-scale sculpture installations of common objects that subvert the viewers’ notion of the familiar, and encourage them to reconsider their perception of space. His early works were based on instantly identifiable motifs, which were simplified and reproduced as monochromatic reliefs - suspended somewhere between painting and sculpture. In the early 1990s he began to explore the viewer’s relationship with scale. With his recreations of tables and chairs large enough to walk under, Therrien transports the viewer into a fantastical, but slightly unsettling, parallel universe. Born in Chicago, he studied at the University of Southern California and currently lives and works in Los Angeles.