Parley for the Oceans x Vortic

2 October–2 November 2020

Victoria Miro is delighted to be a member of Parley Collective and participate in Parley for the Oceans x Vortic with an exhibition of works by Elmgreen & Dragset and Celia Paul.

Launched by Parley for the Oceans, a new form of environmental organisation, and Vortic, the leading XR platform for the art world, Parley Collective brings together leading contemporary galleries who will each stage a virtual exhibition on the extended reality (XR) app Vortic Collect to help raise funds to support Parley’s global ocean protection initiatives.

Installed in a photogrammetrically captured replica of Victoria Miro’s canalside Venice gallery, this exhibition features a sculpture by Elmgreen & Dragset, the artists’ male counterpart to Copenhagen’s waterside icon The Little Mermaid, in dialogue with paintings of sea and sky by Celia Paul.





Elmgreen & Dragset

Epoxy resin, polyurethane cast, metal lacquer (copper), green patinated
190 x 140 x 100 cm
74 3/4 x 55 1/8 x 39 3/8 in

Elmgreen & Dragset, He (Green), 2013

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He (Green) is our male counterpart to Copenhagen’s famous The Little Mermaid… The naked male body in a reclining pose relates to broader themes in our work about questioning traditional notions of masculinity.— Elmgreen & Dragset

Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset have been working together since 1995. In their art, they address social concerns and reveal power structures embedded in our culture in a subversive, yet playful manner. They are interested in the discourse that can arise if objects are radically re-contextualised and if normal modes for the representation of art are altered. 2020 marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of their collaboration.

Writing about the work on view the artists comment, ‘He (Green) is our male counterpart to Copenhagen’s famous The Little Mermaid, from a story by Hans Christian Andersen. One of six versions in different finishes, He (Green) is based on our public sculpture Han (which means “he” in Danish), commissioned for the Kulturværftet (Culture Yard) in Helsingør, Denmark and installed in 2012… The naked male body in a reclining pose relates to broader themes in our work about questioning traditional notions of masculinity. We often show the male form – a leitmotif in our sculptural works – during childhood, adolescence, or young adulthood in a moment of contemplation, vulnerability, wonder, fear, excitement or discomfort, or a combination of these. These depictions subvert the conventional representation of masculinity in classical sculpture, which often portrays the male figure in a heroic posture.’

Photo © Elmar Vestner

Celia Paul

Oil on canvas
53.3 x 106.7 cm
21 x 42 1/8 in

Celia Paul, Seachange: Daybreak, 2017

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Oil on canvas
50.8 x 50.8 cm
20 x 20 in

Celia Paul, Rising Cloud and Bird, 2020

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Oil on canvas
63.5 x 55.9 cm
25 x 22 in

Celia Paul, Rising Clouds and Gulls, 2020

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Oil on canvas
35.6 x 25.4 cm
14 x 10 in

Celia Paul, Summer Clouds and Bird, 2020

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Oil on canvas
63.5 x 55.9 cm
25 x 22 in

Celia Paul, Saint-Malo, Late August, 2019

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Oil on canvas
63.7 x 56.5 cm
25 1/8 x 22 1/4 in

Celia Paul, Dinas Head, Pembrokeshire, 2018

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‘I read a sign of hope in the blue skies and the flying birds that I can see from my studio window.— Celia Paul

Celia Paul’s art is founded on deep connections – familial, creative, looping back and forth across time – to people and places, and is self-assuredly quiet, contemplative and ultimately moving in its attention to detail and intensely felt spirituality.

Seascapes and paintings of water are an enduring motif in Paul’s art. During the 1970s, her father was head of the Lee Abbey religious community in north Devon, where she became familiar with a stretch of coastline that influenced a number of works. Taking the idea of portraiture in a more elemental direction, Paul’s water paintings are permeated by a sense of mortality, of bodies becoming dissolute and consciousness shifting into water, energy and light. While the artist has spoken of her waterscapes in terms of feeling in flux, even grief, for Paul solace can be found in the consoling beauty of nature and the flow of time that connects us all.

Like her seascapes, Paul’s paintings of the sky highlight the artist’s challenge not only to capture specific states of matter but to attempt to capture the moment. Writing about the recent sky paintings on view, she notes, ‘Throughout this spring and summer the weather has been extraordinarily beautiful – day after day of sunshine; the poignant beauty of the weather will always be associated with the first months of the pandemic, in my mind. Living and working alone, as I do, in Central London, I read a sign of hope in the blue skies and the flying birds that I can see from my studio window.’

Photo © Isabelle Young


About Parley for the Oceans and Parley Collective

Parley for the Oceans is the global network where creators, thinkers and leaders from the creative industries, brands, governments and environmental groups come together to raise awareness for the beauty and fragility of the oceans and collaborate on projects that can end their destruction.

Parley was founded in the heart of the art community, with early supporters like Julian Schnabel and Ed Ruscha creating new work in support of the organisation and the ocean cause. Parley has since expanded its program and collaborated on projects ranging from underwater sculptures to sustainable surfboards with leading contemporary artists including Katharina Grosse, Doug Aitken, Bharti Kher, Jenny Holzer, Pipilotti Rist, Walton Ford and Rosemarie Trockel. Fostering collaboration within and beyond the art world, Parley works with artists and galleries to raise awareness for the beauty and fragility of the oceans and help end their destruction. Learn more and join the movement at

Galleries in the Parley Collective include: Sadie Coles HQ, Corvi-Mora, Kasmin, Sean Kelly, KÖNIG GALERIE, Andrew Kreps Gallery, Victoria Miro, PACE, Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Sprüth Magers, Almine Rech, and Esther Schipper. Each participating gallery in the Parley Collective will donate between 5–10% of the proceeds from its virtual exhibition to help fund Parley’s Global Cleanup Network. The network operates in 28 countries and carries out vital work around the world including the collection and removal of plastic waste, and the development of programs which support education, communication, and eco-innovation.

For enquiries regarding featured works, please contact:


Vortic installation

Vortic is the leading extended reality (XR) platform for the art world. Created in response to the unique demands of today’s art market the platform consists of three different tools for galleries and collectors. Galleries use Vortic Curate, a back-end content management system, to create publicly accessible virtual exhibitions, private views and art fair booths on Vortic’s two apps – Vortic Collect and Vortic VR. Using the latest 3-D scanning technology, galleries are able to stage exhibitions in a photogrammetrically captured replica of their gallery space or in a choice of fully customisable generic gallery spaces. Collectors can also use the Vortic Collect app to view how artworks would look in-situ and to scale in their homes using augmented reality (AR).

The Vortic Collect app is available to download from the App Store now and Vortic VR will launch in Autumn 2020 on the Oculus App. Learn more about Vortic here.

For enquiries regarding featured works and other matters, please contact the below:

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