The city will host a large traveling art exhibition

Artist Helen Cammock. (Photo by Alun Callender)

Wolverhampton is one of four cities hosting the British Art Show 9 which will see artists exhibiting at the Wolverhampton Art Gallery and the University of Wolverhampton School of Art as part of the prestigious nationwide tour.

Presented by Hayward Gallery Touring, the exhibition will run from January 22 to April 10.

The Wolverhampton Art Gallery is home to “one of the most important art collections on The Troubles” outside of Northern Ireland.

He also collects works related to the British Black Arts movement which has its roots in the city as many of its members studied at Wolverhampton School of Art.

Works on display at BAS9 will include vibrant paintings depicting the cultural experience of Hurvin Anderson, a Birmingham-born artist with Jamaican heritage, as well as furniture designed by students of Thomas Telford University Technical College (UTC) in Wolverhampton on campus from Springfield.

A new audiovisual installation by experimental rapper, producer, writer, visual and performance artist GAIKA draws on his Caribbean heritage, the culture of the sound system and is a sanctuary for his murdered uncle and other deportees of the Windrush generation.

There will also be street performances, dance, rap, photography, sculpture and visual arts.

Helen Cammock, who was born in Staffordshire, works through film, photography, print, text and performance and is one of the artists participating in the exhibition.

In her next exhibition for BAS9, Changing Room II (2021), Helen will explore the work of her Jamaican-born father who was an amateur ceramicist, magistrate and art teacher in Wolverhampton.

She will recreate ceramic objects he made in the 1960s, along with a new banner work, to form a multimedia installation that will be on display at both the Wolverhampton Art Gallery and the University of Wolverhampton School of Art.

Helen said: “In 2014, I made a film called Changing Room which examines my relationship with my father and explores the different barriers people face.

“I shot the whole movie at his house after he moved into a retirement home and found mold in his garage.

“They were ceramic objects that I used as characters in the film as I discussed various things including race and family aspirations.

“I used the facilities of the School of Art to redo some of these pieces that will accompany the video installation.

“BAS9 is a great show and it’s really exciting to be involved and especially when you feel like you’re coming back to where I was born, it’s like coming full circle.”

Brian Cass, Senior Curator, Hayward Gallery Touring, said: “We are delighted to be working with Wolverhampton Art Gallery and the University of Wolverhampton School of Art on British Art Show 9.

“The collections and stories of these two iconic institutions provide important context for BAS9.

“We hope that BAS9’s extraordinary range and variety of outstanding works will give all who live and visit Wolverhampton the opportunity to engage with the most exciting contemporary art produced in the UK today.”


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