May – October 2010

“Lesser artists borrow, great artists steal”
Attributed to both Picasso and Stravinsky, but probably stolen from elsewhere.

Art Heist is an adventure that connects audiences with conceptual art, the art gallery, questions of ownership and the value of art by letting them plan and execute their very own art heist. Audience groups rob a gallery of a fictional work of conceptual art by faking a replica. Art Heist gives the excitement of breaking into a gallery while posing its audience big questions about art: who is it for, who decides what’s good, why is it valuable and does the value of the art lie in the idea or in the object? The outcome of each heist is shaped by the choices the audience makes.

Art Heist was originally conceived in collaboration with Winterwell Associates. Its research and development phase took place in May and October 2010 at the New Art Gallery Walsall. It was part of the Art of Ideas programme produced by Arts & Business West Midlands, and was supported by Arts Council England.


“imaginative and ambitious”

Jeremy Thrill, artist and audience member

“In terms of heart palpitations and sweaty palms, talking to the real security guard after I’d ‘fainted’ was one of the most exciting points.”

Vicky Roden, audience member


Coney was here represented by:
Concept: Joe Halliwell, Annette Mees, Daniel Winterstein
Director: Annette Mees
Writer: David Varela
Designer: Sophie Sampson
Producers: Robin Ray & Tracky Crombie
Cast: Clive Woodward, Nic Adams, Sam Booth