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Parasol unit’s projects offer fertile ground for exploration into contemporary artistic practices and ideas. Through three annual projects – EXPOSURE Award, Parasol Public and Parasolstice – Parasol unit strives to make high quality contemporary art as accessible as possible, whilst questioning the boundaries of audience engagement and supporting artists at key stages in their career.

Parasolstice - Winter Light

Image of Parasolstice - Winter Light

For its ongoing series of Parasolstice – Winter Light projects, Parasol unit commissions an international artist to create a sculptural work that addresses the phenomenon of light. Throughout the winter months, the work illuminates the outdoor space at the foundation, and is accompanied by a related programme of events.

Parasol public

Image of Parasol public

For these one-off projects Parasol unit organises an experimental performance event in a public outdoor space in London. These intriguing, week-long events take contemporary art to a new audience by attracting the participation of passers-by, whose initial curiosity quickly becomes active enthusiasm.

Ana Gallardo: A place to live when we are old, Parasol unit installation view 2012, Courtesy Ana Gallardo, Mario Gomez Casas, Ramiro Gallardo and Parasol unit, London. Photography: Hugo Glendinning


Image of EXPOSURE Award

Since 2009, the annual Parasol unit EXPOSURE Award has celebrated emerging art school graduates by exhibiting their work professionally at a time that ensures international exposure. Following a rotating format, Parasol unit invites one London art school a year to nominate a shortlist of candidates for the Award. A judging panel selects the winners according to the innovative skills and excellence in aesthetics demonstrated by the young artists. Three winning graduates are then invited to mount a month-long exhibition at the Parasol unit gallery during the annual Frieze Art Fair. Along with a modest cash prize the winning graduates are also given the opportunity to present their work during a public panel discussion at the gallery.

Sean Steadman. Green Bather, 2012. Oil and acrylic ink on canvas. 84 x 60 inches. Private Collection. Courtesy of the artist