It Takes a Village was Humber Street Gallery’s first exhibition curated by Senior Curator, John Heffernan.
Reflecting on the ideas of congregation and the power of public assembly, It Takes a Village featured works by artists including Romily Alice (UK), Derek Alexis Coard (USA), Tessa Lynch (UK), Lakwena Maciver (UK), Hardeep Pandhal (UK) and Paul Yore (AUS).
This group show brought together a rich and broad range of practices including neon works, textile, video, drawing and installation. Set across the three gallery spaces, the exhibition also included a series of soap box discussions, talks, screenings and performances that took place throughout the duration of the exhibition.
Artist Romily Alice, explored modern society’s relationship with looking, being looked at, pleasure and the body through her neon work, while Lakwena Maciver responded to the exhibition’s themes by creating a new installation work in the form of a stage. This piece, which showed Maciver’s distinct colour palette and commitment to vibrant motifs, acted as a backdrop to the programme of performance and debate.
Tessa Lynch looked at motherhood and her practice as a contemporary artist. Holding a print workshop at Hull School of Art & Design with a group of local artist-mothers, the outcomes of which were displayed in the exhibition.
It Takes a Village included over 30 drawings from American artist Derrick Alexis Coard, who died earlier this year. Many of the works are part of a series of portraits of bearded black men and Coard said of his work that it is “… a form of testimonial where black men can be seen in a more positive and righteous light.”
Paul Yore and Hardeep Pandhal, the final artists in this show, used personal experiences to deal with complex issues around representation and iconography. Yore presented several technicolour collages and tapestries, while Pandhal’s work ranged from video to textile.
Image: Cut, Humber Street Gallery 2019. ©James Mulkeen
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