Including ‘Tantric Surrealism’ from radical feminist artist Penny Slinger, a major retrospective on Cindy Sherman, and a long-awaited solo show from the late, great photographer Davide Sorrenti
FICTION, BOLD TENDENCIES, LONDON
The unveiling of Bold Tendencies’ site-specific installations programme each year tends to signal the start of summer. While we await the sunshine in London, the Hannah Barry Gallery-organised annual show is already in full bloom. This year’s theme is “Fiction” and raises the question of our century: “Is this real or not?”. The line-up features Liz Glynn’s “Unearthed Underground” (2019) – a reference to London’s underground sewer system – Lawrence Lek’s “FTSE (Farsight Stock Exchange)” (2019) – a multimedia installation set in a future, dystopian London – and Jenny Holzer’s “Inflammatory Wall” (2019) – a new iteration of the artist’s famous Inflammatory Essays (1979 – 1982), amongst others. A series of events will also take place over the coming months, with the return of The Multi-Story Orchestra.
Fiction runs at Bold Tendencies until 21 September 2019
ART NIGHT, LONDON
The fourth edition of London’s all-nighter art event, Art Night, launches this Saturday. Bringing together 12 artist projects as part of the Curated Programme selected by Artistic Director Helen Nisbet as well as 40+ independently curated projects as part of the Art Night Open programme. The installations will be shown in “unconventional” locations – such as cinemas, churches, and car parks – around Walthamstow and King’s Cross and will be open to the public from dusk until dawn. To top it off, each artist – from Barbara Kruger to Marina Abramović, Athena Papadopoulos, Zadie Xa, Cory Arcangel, and many more – will share work which responds to pop band East 17’s 1993 song “It’s Alright”. And it’s all free!
Art Night runs from dusk until dawn in various locations around Walthamstow and King’s Cross. Full programme here
KISS MY GENDERS, HAYWARD GALLERY, LONDON
London’s Hayward Gallery’s Kiss My Genders hosts more than 100 artworks from artists spanning several generations and the past 50 years of queer history. From Victoria Sin to Lyle Ashton Harris, Catherine Opie, Juliana Huxtable, Peter Hujar, and so many more, these artists have and/or are currently “articulating and engaging with gender fluidity, as well as non-binary, trans, and intersex identities”.
Kiss My Genders runs at London’s Hayward Gallery until 8 September 2019
GET UP, STAND UP NOW, SOMERSET HOUSE, LONDON
Celebrating the impact of 50 years of black creativity within Britain and abroad, Get Up, Stand Up Now plays host to approximately 100 artists – from legends such as David Hammons, Carrie Mae Weems, Glenn Ligon, and Steve McQueen to a new generation of names such as Ronan Mckenzie, Campbell Addy, Mowalola Ogunlesi, and Grace Wales Bonner. Using various mediums, from artworks, music, literature, design, fashion, and photography, the show also features personal archives such as letters, photographs, audio clips, and films to “articulate and address the black experience and sensibility”.
Get Up, Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers runs at London’s Somerset House until 15 September 2019
IF YOU KNOW THE BEGINNING, THE END IS NO TROUBLE, LIZ JOHNSON ARTUR, SOUTH LONDON GALLERY, LONDON
Russian-Ghanaian artist, Liz Johnson Artur has been making photographs across Europe, America, Africa, and the Caribbean for three decades. After the success of her show at Brooklyn Museum earlier this year, Artur is now showing new sculptural works, which incorporate photographs from her massive archive, in her first UK solo show at South London Gallery. Focussing on London, where she has lived since 1991, the photographs displayed were taken in Peckham Rye, at black-majority churches, and non-binary club nights. “What I do is people,” says Artur, “but it’s those people who are my neighbours. And it’s those people who I don’t see represented anywhere.” The exhibition also includes a programme of events from poets, performers, and musicians.
Catch up on our interview with the artist here
If You Know The Beginning, The End Is No Trouble runs at London’s South London Gallery until 1 September 2019
BASQUIAT’S “DEFACEMENT”: THE UNTOLD STORY, JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, GUGGENHEIM MUSEUM, NEW YORK CITY
Much has been said and shown about Basquiat since his passing in 1988, and yet, new stories continue to emerge all the time. The latest is being told in an exhibition hosted at New York City’s Guggenheim Museum, titled Basquiat’s “Defacement”: The Untold Story. The show focusses on “a formative chapter in the artist’s career told through the lens of his identity and the role of cultural activism in New York City during the early 1980s”.
Specifically, it looks at the death of young, black activist Michael Stewart by the city’s transit police after they accused him of tagging a wall in an East Village subway station, and the subsequent painting made by Basquiat in honour of Stewart: “The Death of Michael Stewart” (1983). It’s reported that the killing deeply impacted Basquiat, and he made many more paintings and works on paper in the years after stemming from the incident. Additional paintings from Basquiat’s oeuvre are also included, as are those of his contemporaries, such as David Hammons and Andy Warhol, as well as ephemera such as newspaper clippings and protest posters, as well as Stewart’s own artwork.
Basquiat’s “Defacement”: The Untold Story runs at New York City’s Guggenheim from 21 June – 6 November 2019
VIRGIL ABLOH: “FIGURES OF SPEECH”, MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART CHICAGO
The first-ever museum exhibition dedicated to the work of artist and designer Virgil Abloh has opened in Chicago, the multi-disciplinary’s hometown. “Figures of Speech” offers an in-depth look at Abloh’s many career milestones, from launching his early days at Hood By Air, to launching his own brand Off-White in 2013, all the way to becoming the Artistic Director for Louis Vuitton's menswear collections, and his collaborations with IKEA, as well as those with artists such as Arthur Jafa and Kanye West.
Virgil Abloh: “Figures of Speech” runs at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art until 22 September, and will travel to Boston and Brooklyn over the next two years
DAVIDE SORRENTI, CC PROJECTS, NEW YORK CITY
Photographer Davide Sorrenti lost his life in 1997 when he was just 20-years-old but his huge output of imagery during his short career has kept his legacy alive for more than two decades. While Sorrenti was known to use drugs, his death was falsely attributed to an overdose, when, in fact, it was Cooley’s Anemia, a rare blood disorder that he had suffered from his whole life. Director Charlie Curran’s documentary SeeKnowEvil has done an incredible job at reframing Sorrenti’s life and work, and now, an exhibition curated by Jade Berreau and Francesca Sorrenti (Davide’s mother) is launching at CC Projects in his adopted home of New York City. Titled Our Beautyfull Future, the show will bring together a collection of Sorrenti’s images – from his self-portraits to his intimate shots of friends, and life on the city streets in Downtown 90s NYC.
Our Beautyfull Future runs at New York City’s CC Projects from 26 June – 28 July 2019
KEITH HARING, TATE LIVERPOOL
Last week, Tate Liverpool launched a major retrospective on the life and work of Keith Haring which features more than 85 works. Having passed away from complications due to Aids in 1990 at 31-years-old, Haring left behind a huge body of work, which included paintings, screen prints, drawings, photographs, film, record covers, and other ephemera. His work was dedicated to ensuring art was accessible, whether creating protest flyers for anti-Nuclear rallies or ACT UP demonstrations, public murals, or his Pop Shop – where he sold affordable versions of his work – as well as offering a visual language for the most urgent issues of the time.
Read our interview with co-curator Tamar Hemmes here
Keith Haring runs at Tate Liverpool until 10 November 2019
CINDY SHERMAN, NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY, LONDON
Since the 1970s, Cindy Sherman has used costume as a means of social commentary – from hypersexualisation to ageing and domesticity. Her earliest photo series, Untitled Film Stills (1977–80), saw Sherman transform herself into a series of characters, and she has continued to create hundreds more since. Now her work is being given a major retrospective at London’s National Portrait Gallery, bringing around 150 works from the mid-1970s onwards, as well as new work never before displayed in a public gallery. Keep an eye out for our interview with curator Paul Moorhouse next week.
Cindy Sherman runs at London’s National Portrait Gallery from 27 June – 15 September 2019
FRANK BOWLING, TATE BRITAIN, LONDON
Guyana born but moved to London at 19, artist Frank Bowling receives a long overdue first major retrospective at London’s Tate Britain. Creating art since the early 1960s, Bowling has long been celebrated for his extraordinary exploration and expansions of the possibilities of paint. Studying at London’s Royal College of Art, Bowling was immersed amongst the city’s art scene, before he moved to New York in the mid-60s (later moving back to London in 1975, but he maintains studios in both cities). At 85, Bowling still paints every day, continuing to experiment with new materials and techniques.
Frank Bowling runs at London’s Tate Britain until 26 August 2019
FAITH RINGGOLD, SERPENTINE GALLERY, LONDON
Faith Ringgold has received her first solo show in a European institution, at London’s Serpentine Gallery. For more than five decades, the American artist has created work which challenges perceptions of African American identity as well as gender inequality. The roots of her art are embedded in protest and activist movements such as feminism and civil rights, and Ringgold – with her then 18-year-old daughter Michele Wallace – founded the National Black Feminist Organisation in 1973. Her mediums include painting, story quilts, children’s books, and political posters, as well as through her teachings.
Faith Ringgold runs at London’s Serpentine Gallery until 8 September 2019
TANTRIC TRANSFORMATIONS, PENNY SLINGER, RICHARD SALTOUN, LONDON
Since the late 1960s, feminist, provocateur, and radical artist Penny Slinger has used her own body to explore the feminine subconscious and psyche, as well the relationship between sexuality, mysticism, and femininity. Describing her work as ‘feminist surrealism’, her oeuvre spans photography, collage, film, and sculpture, with its seeds sown in political protest, social change, and sexual freedom. Opening at London’s Richard Saltoun, Tantric Transformations will showcase her Tantric art, including collage from the mid-70s, Xerox body prints, old photographs, and new ones made especially for this show. Coinciding with the show, Slinger will be in conversation with writer Hettie Judah on 29 June, and from 30 June, the gallery will also host weekly Tantric Yoga classes – sign up here.
Tantric Transformations runs at London’s Richard Saltoun from 29 June – 24 August 2019