Spanning both gallery locations, this ensemble of photography, drawing, painting, moving image and sculpture allows viewers to drift into unfolding discovery.
The works at Golden Square reveal how the notion of body is imbued with multiple meanings, including recurring bodies of artwork, or bodies of human subjects themselves. An analyst, an archeologist, and an artist, Daniel Silver's two figures take a prominent position at the front of the gallery. Hanging from the ceiling is Fiona Banner’s Black Blind (1999), implicating the body through its sheer scale as well as the process of mark-making with graphite on paper. Dayanita Singh questions the nature of representation itself with the still moving image Mona and Myself (2013). Hovering in a space between video and still photography, the unfixed nature of this work mirrors the uniqueness of its non-binary subject, Mona Ahmed.
At Soho Square, narrative dissolves into the threshold of memory. Shot on a mountain in Secciano, Italy, Mountain Wind (2002) by Jaki Irvine portrays wind moving through trees, causing the mountain to appear to breathe. In the accompanying soundtrack, the Italian diva Mina is heard singing as she watches her lover sleeping. In the second room, Anna Barriball and Tacita Dean use source materials to reimagine the past in an ever-unfolding present. For Barriball, found 35mm slides are photographed and re-projected as burnt out artefacts, becoming objects that are at once tangible and fleeting. In Dean’s Trying to Find the Spiral Jetty (1998), the artist is on a search for Robert Smithson’s iconic earthwork, but the blending of fact and fiction ensures that the work, as well as the journey itself, is steeped in myth. Downstairs, photographs by John Riddy propose a release from gravity. In creating images of the sky, the otherwise fixed environment of a constructed landscape gives way to an endless vista extending overhead. Only when the light, colour, atmosphere and formation appear to fall into place can the final work emerge and swell.