Anna Barriball Exhibition Guide

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Exhibition Guide

Anna Barriball

30 September – 27 November 2011

MK Gallery 900 Midsummer Blvd Milton Keynes MK9 3QA T 01908 676 900

Tuesday – Friday 12pm – 8pm Saturday 11am –  8pm Sunday 11am – 5pm

This exhibition is the first major survey of work by British artist Anna Barriball (born 1972), bringing together drawing, video, photography and sculpture made over the last decade. Long Gallery The works in the Long Gallery include a number of ordinary, found objects transformed by a meticulous process of repetitive strokes in pen and ink. In Bag drawing, 2000, a disposable, white plastic bag has been covered with red marker pen to create a glowing, concentrated object; in Money drawing, 2000, a five pound note has been coated in gold ink so that the folds and creases from daily handling are accentuated. Light drawing, 2001, an angle-poise lamp covered in yellow ink, uses light as a source of colour; while Silver map, 2003, submerges a map of the world in a translucent layer of silver pen. A new installation Untitled, 2011, covers the wall with a number of beach windbreaks, whose bright, familiar colours have been altered by repetitive strokes of black marker pen. The saturation of the ink ebbs and flows across the entire surface as old pens run dry and are replaced by fresh ones. The rhythm of the shading echoes the seconds, minutes and hours spent throughout this intensive drawing process. Behind the windbreaks, on close inspection, coloured light has been cast onto the back wall. These works, and Barriball’s practice in general, begin with the act of looking: looking closely, looking in, looking through and around, exploring every millimetre, inside and out, in an intimate and playful process. Window, 2002, and Silver curtain, 2011, introduce Barriball’s interest in architecture, doorways and windows. While the silver of the door curtain sparkles and shimmers, the viewer’s

Events Programme See website for full event listings Talks & To u r s In Conversation Anna Barriball discusses her work with art historian Briony Fer. Thursday 17 November, 6.30pm, Free. Pre-book online or at the Information Desk. Exhibition Tours Free. No need to pre-book. Just drop in. Thursday 20 October, 6pm Sunday 13 November, 2pm Access Tours Free. For visitors with additional access needs Audio Described: Monday 24 October, 2pm BSL Interpreted: Saturday 12 November, 2pm Family Events Free. Just drop in. Start The Art Parent & Toddler sessions Every Tuesday, 11am–12noon Mini Makers Artist-led activities suitable for accompanied children ages 4+ Every Saturday, 1pm–3pm

reflection in the traced window creates a degree of uncertainty, whether you are looking out from the inside or peering in from the outside. Middle Gallery Many of Barriball’s works evolve from spontaneous, if not accidental, discoveries, channelling natural forces such as light, air or gravity, with little or no physical contact. 36 Breaths, 2002, was made by blowing a drop of ink with a single breath onto black and white photographs found in a market. Detail, 2011, is a blown up fragment from a found photograph. Ambiguous figures stare out of a window that has become mottled through the enlargement process, as specs of dust and dirt start to dissolve or erase the original image. The video, titled Draw (fireplace), 2005, records a sheet of tracing paper sucked in and out of a fireplace by a draught, as if the building is breathing, while a sprinkling of leaves, Yellow leaves, 2011, strewn across the gallery floor have been cut from second-hand curtain fabric reminiscent of Barriball’s childhood home. Door, 2004, is one of a series of works, like Window in the Long Gallery, where Barriball records her surroundings at home or in the studio, by meticulously tracing an impression of floorboards, brickwork, windows and doors. Drawn in pencil on paper, these works hover between photography, drawing and sculpture, capturing, like a cast, the minute details and wear and tear on the object’s surface. Many of the works in the Middle Gallery relate to familiar, domestic objects, scenes and places that have been transformed or adapted into strange and illusory images, either through chance, a deliberate physical process or the vagaries of memory.

Cube Gallery The works in the Cube Gallery extend Barriball’s interest in walls, windows, doorways and thresholds, revelling in the physical and metaphorical associations that these openings and closures carry. Brick Wall, 2005, Untitled, 2009, and Shutters, 2011, demonstrate a progression in Barriball’s technique from tracing or ‘casting’ objects towards a more intense carving or even chiselling process in Shutters, as a fine pencil pushes paper to its limit, in an ongoing attempt to bridge the gap between the real object and its representation. If these works require prolonged physical exertion, others are created through a more playful and spontaneous process. Windows 1-10, 2006, is a series of ten found photographs which have been covered by a blank sheet of paper; only a small aperture has been cut out to expose a window in the photo behind. Another series of works, Untitled VII, Untitled V, Untitled XII, from 2004, has been created by blowing ink and bubble mixture over found photographs while a new video piece, on a monitor, presents a rapid sequence of flash photos of facades and windows, textures and blemishes. Like a blinking eye or even the bursting of a bubble, the artist uses the repetitive click of the camera shutter to freeze, if only momentarily, elusive and ephemeral moments. Whether capturing specific instances or conjuring hazy memories, Barriball’s work continuously combines intense, concentrated moments with slight, playful gestures, highlighting the fleeting moments and discreet surroundings that witness our passage through time and space.

October Half-Term Family Workshops Themed drawing activities for all ages, inspired by our current exhibition. Thursday 27 & Friday 28 October, 10am–12noon

Friday 28 October, 6.30pm El Topo (1970) Dir. Alejandro Jodorowsky (Cert. 18, 125 mins) Selected by artists Boyd & Evans

Scr atch Nig h ts

Friday 4 November, 6.30pm 8 ½ (1963) Dir. Federico Fellini (Cert. 18, 138 mins)

Happening every Thursday evening at the Gallery, Scratch Nights are a series of free events with emerging local and national practitioners working in music/sound, film, expanded cinema, performance and spoken word. See website for weekly listings. Fr iday Nig h t Films Screenings start at 6.30pm Tickets £5 (concessions £3) Pre-book at the Information Desk or on 01908 676 900 Friday 7 October, 6.30pm Blow Up (1966) Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni (Cert. R18, 111 mins) Friday 14 October, 6.30pm Mulholland Drive (2001) Dir. David Lynch (Cert. 15, 147 mins) Friday 21 October, 6.30pm Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) Dir. Wes Craven (Cert. 18, 91 mins)

Friday 11 November, 6.30pm Playtime (1967) Dir. Jacques Tati (Cert. U, 155 mins) Selected by artist Mark Ariel Waller Friday 18 November, 6.30pm MK Filmakers Network Shorts A selection of short films made by filmmakers based in Milton Keynes Friday 25 November, 6.30pm Metropolis (1927) Dir. Fritz Lang (Cert. PG, 153 mins) Selected by curator Claire Louise Staunton Organised in collaboration with: Independent Cinema MK

Long Gallery

Middle Gallery

Cube Gallery

1. Money drawing 2000 Gold pen on five pound note Edition of three Private Collection

8. 36 Breaths 2002 Ink on found photographs Collection of Octavius and Joanne Black

15. Brick Wall 2005 Pencil on paper Tate: Purchased using funds provided by the 2006 Outset / Frieze Art Fair Fund to benefit the Tate Collection 2007

2. Light drawing 2000 Marker pen on lamp and paper Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 3. Window 2002 Pencil on paper Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre, London 4. Silver curtain 2011 Metallised plastic Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 5. Bag drawing 2000 Marker pen on carrier bag Colección Bergé, Spain 6. Untitled 2011 Marker pen on windbreaks, metal poles Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 7. Silver Map 2003 Silver pen on world map Leeds Museums and Galleries (purchased through the Contemporary Art Society’s Special Collection Scheme on behalf of Leeds Art Gallery with lottery funding from Arts Council England, 2005)

9. Draw (fireplace) 2005 DVD video projection Duration 10 min. 30 sec. Edition of three Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 10. Copper pipes 2011 Two parts, acrylic paint on paper Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 11. Untitled II 2008 Ink on paper Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 12. Door 2004 Pencil on paper The Saatchi Gallery, London 13. Detail 2011 Silver gelatin print Edition of three Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 14. Yellow leaves 2011 Curtain fabric Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

16. Shutters 2011 Diptych, pencil on paper Private Collection, New York 17. Untitled III 2008 Ink on paper Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London 18. Untitled VII 2004 Ink and bubble mixture on found photograph Collection of Sandra and Giancarlo Bonollo 19. Untitled V 2004 Ink and bubble mixture on found photograph Collection of Sandra and Giancarlo Bonollo 20. Untitled XII 2004 Ink and bubble mixture on found photograph Private Collection 21. Untitled 2009 Pencil on paper Private Collection 22. Windows 1-10 2006 Found photographs Private Collection, Copenhagen Courtesy Galleri Bo Bjerggaard 23. Untitled 2011 DVD, looped Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Exhibition Supporters The exhibition has been organised in collaboration with The Fruitmarket Gallery, with support from The Henry Moore Foundation and Frith Street Gallery.




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Middle Gallery 14


Bookshop & Resource Area


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Cube Gallery






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