Jyll Bradley & Stuart Brisley

8 March - 10 April, 2013

Andrew Mummery is pleased to announce the first of a series of ongoing dialogues which will form the central theme of the exhibition programme at Mummery + Schnelle’s new gallery space.

Jyll Bradley and Stuart Brisley have been invited to exhibit groups of works that employ photography as a means to explore notions of identity, community and the politics of place. Common to both artists’ work is the use of photography as a structural and environmental experience, rather than as documentation.

Jyll Bradley will be exhibiting light boxes and what she calls light drawings, which she makes using a combination of photography and photocopying. The works relate to her first experiences of London when she was a student at Goldsmiths College in the late 1980s, in particular travelling on the London Underground - a flâneur - and being drawn to the light boxes in the passages between the platforms. Bradley pioneered the use of commercial light boxes in British art, reflecting on their nature as beacons, navigation points and sales pitches. Important to Bradley’s work are the aesthetics of minimalism – especially the reflection of light as volume – but, distinctively, she uses them to insist on a content that is relational to sexual politics and identity. She is interested in the collective construction of identity and social relations and how these are now often mediated through reified objects of consumption. Bradley’s work, however, asserts identity as flux, not as something fixed. Flux is also a concern of the gallery, reflective as it must be of changes in object status, institutional frameworks and forms of distribution.

Stuart Brisley’s work, like that of Jyll Bradley, moves between art contexts and social ones. It is addressed to the politics of consumption, class relations and authority. Brisley is best known as a key figure in British performance art, but what deserves to be better recognized is the importance of painting, sculpture, video, photography and drawing to his practice, and how his work in these media contribute to a more wide ranging debate about what performance means. At Mummery + Schnelle in March Brisley will be exhibiting seven photographs taken between 1989 and 1991 in and around Brick Lane in East London, and in Berlin. These have been selected from a much larger body of work that followed on from the important Georgiana Collection series. This began as an attempt to address the question “What is Community” and the photographs exhibited here continue to investigate this. They depict places and things in states of transition, spaces of display and exchange, and objects symbolic of displacement.

Notes on the Artists

Jyll Bradley

Jyll Bradley’s wide ranging artistic practice has encompassed photo-based studio work such as light boxes and her unique ‘light drawings’, public art projects in which she has worked closely with local communities, and the writing of plays for radio. In all her work she makes the political personal, but always with a poetic sensibility to place and individual identity. Bradley’s studio work has been inspired by aspects of minimalism and feminism. She makes beautiful, enigmatic objects often containing parallel narratives whose meaning is never fully fixed. Light is an important protagonist in her work and she talks of using it to “bring things into the present”. Her public projects have involved a collaborative search for meaning in “place”.

Stuart Brisley

Stuart Brisley has been an important figure in British art for sixty years. He is probably best known for the series of key performance related works created in the 1970s and 80s that re-defined what “performance art” might be and encompass. Brisley used his body as a metaphorical and allegorical site to enact and comment upon how the individual situates him/herself between authority and freedom. What is often forgotten, however, is how long Brisley has been creating innovative work and the importance to his practice, alongside performance, of painting, photography, sculpture, video and drawing. His is a combative art involving the politicization of the body, and is imbued with a deep understanding of how rituals function in society and how they can be used to produce insights into the way society operates. Today, at a time of increasing political, social and economic polarization, Stuart Brisley’s critique of societal norms and prejudices is as relevant and compelling as it ever was.

Mummery + Schnelle will be pleased to present in October 2013, in collaboration with Domobaal, two exhibitions of new work by Brisley.

For further information, please contact Mummery + Schnelle on:
+44 (0)20 7729 9707 or at: info@mummeryschnelle.com

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