MK Gallery presents a important study of Guyanese-born British artist and photographer Ingrid Pollard – the very first exhibition to entirely explore Pollard’s revolutionary and experimental follow, from the 1980’s to the current working day, and look at her considerable contribution to British art.
Ingrid Pollard is renowned for making use of pictures as social exercise, doing the job with portrait and landscape photography to question our romantic relationship with the purely natural entire world and interrogate social constructs these as Britishness, race, sexuality, and id. Operating throughout a amazing selection of approaches, from images, printmaking, drawing and installation, to artist textbooks, video, and audio, Pollard’s exercise combines meticulous research and experimental imaginative procedures to make artwork that is at the moment deeply particular and socially engaged, addressing issues that are urgent and applicable right now: the human human body, race and migration, our connection with the pure earth.
A profound desire in the procedures of photography has been a frequent during Pollard’s occupation. She has experimented with digital and analogue procedures, frequently making use of Victorian photographic processes, acquiring photographs on wooden, fabric and slate. Through her profession she has documented the English landscape, uncovering hidden and unseen histories and stereotypes. Her work frequently presents evidence gathered more than extensive intervals of investigation in which she observes and explores a distinct place, normally imbedded inside the community who dwell and function there. Much of her do the job is designed on residencies away from home, exploring suggestions of illustration, landscape, and identity.
The exhibition at MK Gallery, supported by Freelands Foundation by the Freelands Award, is the 1st to present an overview of Pollard’s career to date, that includes is effective from significant collection from the previous 40 several years together with new do the job.
In Pastoral Interlude (1987), a collection of hand-tinted photos depicting black persons in rural configurations this sort of as the Lake District offset standard idyllic representations of the English landscape in opposition to unseen histories of exclusion, demanding the stereotype of black persons as primarily connected with urban environments. Created thirty many years soon after Pastoral Interludes, in the collection Valentine Times (2017) Pollard applied this same hand-tinting system to late 19th century photographs made by Valentine & Sons, initially created to promote Jamaica as a location for redevelopment, an archive Pollard continued to explore for the duration of her time as the inaugural Stuart Hall Basis Fellow at the College of Sussex.
The exhibition will also attribute critical will work from the 1990s and Pollard’s curiosity in representations of the human body and sexuality, which includes Deny: Picture: Assault (1991), in which fragmented visuals of the body are overlaid with scientific, homophobic remarks, and Contenders (1995), a collection of lifestyle-measurement fragmented images of the male human body that dilemma the hyper-masculinity of the boxer. The exhibition will also existing some of Pollard’s most enduring tasks, established over decades of comprehensive analysis. For above 30 many years Pollard has discovered pub signals across England which refer to or depict the determine of the African In the set up Seventeen of Sixty Eight (2019), images of these figures reveal this ignored factor of English historical past together with related objects and texts. For the exhibition at MK Gallery, Pollard has continued her experimentation with ‘the body’, presenting a new kinetic sculptural installation motivated by figures in colonial films. The sculpture is manufactured from acquainted found objects and resources like home furnishings, rope, and saws, employing their sounds and movements in eerie, unfamiliar ways.
Pollard was 1 of the to start with artists associated in the Black British art movement in Britain, taking part in quite a few seminal team exhibitions in the 1980s which include Black Girls: Time Now, Battersea Arts Centre (1983) and The Slim Black Line, ICA (1985). For the duration of a time of urgent conversations between black artists, writers and thinkers discovering their connection to Britain’s colonial past and artwork historical past, Pollard documented existence in communities in London and conferences on women’s liberation and racial equality. In the 1980s she labored at Lenthall Street Workshop, a group-based feminist collective in East London that assisted distribute radical political strategies and contributed to grassroots movements of feminism, anti-racism, and LGBT+ rights. She played an significant part in documenting black people’s creativeness and existence in 1980s Britain, together with the do the job of performers, actors, and writers these kinds of as Alice Walker, Theatre of Black Women, Ellen Kuzwayo, Jackie Kay, and Maya Angelou. In 1988 she was one particular of the 21 founder associates of Autograph, an agency supporting black photographic observe and championing pictures that explores issues of race, id, illustration, human rights and social justice.
Anthony Spira, Director of MK Gallery, claimed: “This exhibition is an critical option to really see and celebrate Ingrid Pollard’s creative follow on its have terms, which is incredible in its selection and innovation. Her work is at at the time particular and socially urgent, guiding us by some of the most significant concerns we facial area today via her extraordinary use of graphic generating as a kind of social exercise.”
Gilane Tawadros, Curator of the exhibition, reported: “Ingrid Pollard follow has prolonged been concentrated on the human physique, astro-physics and geology, and in specific geology in the formation of the stars and planets. The title of the exhibition “Carbon Slowly but surely Turning” invitations us to replicate on geological time in relation to human time. On the one particular hand the millennia in which carbon, rock and other purely natural supplies are created, and on the other the brevity of human existence by comparison and the affecting mother nature of geology on the human type. A quantity of Pollard’s is effective replicate on the cyclical character of history and human experience, wherever every little thing is matter to improve, at times around hundreds or thousands of a long time, at other moments in the blink of an eye.”
Curated by Gilane Tawadros in collaboration with the artist.
At MK Gallery, Milton Keyne
until finally May 29, 2022
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