Introduction to the themes of the exhibition
This inter-generational exhibition at Rivington Place presents some of the most interesting young artists working today alongside established figures. Exhibiting artists reflect on the complexities of living with more than one culture. They explore their own identities, and bring past debates into the context of today’s globalised society.
Cultural identity, belonging and affiliation are discussed with a mixture of seriousness, humour and irony. This poignant and original selection of work shows a fascination with how the artists see themselves and how others see them, reminding us that our identities are continuously shifting as we negotiate society.
About the work
PS1 – ground Floor
In Simon Fujiwara’s video and installation Artist’s Book Club: Hakuruberri Fuin no Monogatari he performs a role in a spoof TV arts programme, discussing the language used in Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn. He analyses cross-cultural confusion and fetishisation, all the while assuming a character in cultural drag; an exaggerated caricature of a Japanese gay man.
Anthony Key’s sculptures use food to playfully unpick certain ‘Chinese’ stereotypes. A new installation for the window incorporates 8,000 chopsticks drawing attention to the restaurants and take-aways around the UK.
Dave Lewis combines photography with ethnographic research as a premise for his richly textured installations. He invites the viewer to consider their own sense of place, belonging and identity through classifications based on family, race, religion and the State.
Nina Mangalanayagam’s work explores the fluidity of identities looking at family relationships and national identity. In the video piece Lacuna the artist attempts the ‘Indian Head Nod’ which is used heavily in South Asia; the photographic series Homeland comments on traditional absurdities and the struggle to fit in.
PS2 – 2nd Floor
Navin Rawanchaikul’s work focuses on local identity and its shifting dynamics within globalised culture. In the installation Hong Rub Khaek (Khaek Welcome) he interviews Indian migrants living in Chiang Mai, Thailand, about their experiences of making a home in a new culture.