Fifteen artists re-imagine the domestic space in Room currently showing at Sadie Coles HQ until Saturday 18 Feb 2017. Featuring a mixture of installations, sculpture and photography, this show challenges the notion of a room as a domestic haven of safety and shelter. In one of the most terrifying installations, The Teenage Room, Klara Liden has built a savage interior, accessed either by the axe weighted door, or the hatch at the bottom of a wall. In the room is a bunk bed structure spray painted black. There’s a sense of tension, intrigue, escape, kidnap and horror in this room, even in the banality of the dirty, sticky beige carpet.
The theme of escape is explored in the surreal photo montages of Penny Slinger. Windows, doorways, corridors offer a way out, but to what and where we don’t know. In some works, the escape route is psychical as in an exorcism or an escape into the private world of reading. In another, physical, the protagonist is trapped between the shadows (Between Light and Dark), like the butterflies and the women pinned to the display in Butterfly Collection.
Heidi Bücher creates a floating skeleton of a house with a series of screens. This is a house that seems to be made from human skin as it wafts in the breeze.
In many of these works, the rooms are pictured without the actor present. Nan Goldin’s Empty Rooms and My Bed document the rooms after the actors have left, we are left to imagine the activity which has taken place, who the inhabitants were. Sarah Lucas’s Chuffing Away to Oblivion 1996 the interior of a shed is covered in tabloid wallpaper – pages from the tabloids in the nineties are pasted over all the interior. Full of criminal bankers, missing children and topless women meld together in a tabloid world of smut and shame, the occupant has left the building.
On show are also rarely exhibited photos by Francesca Woodman, Cell XVII by Louise Bourgeois and Beverly Buchanan’s architectural buildings from reclaimed materials, all worth a trip in themselves.
Room will tour to the Mead Gallery, University of Warick, Saturday 6 May to Saturday 24 June 2017.
Artists in Room include Louise Bourgeois, Beverly Buchanan, Heidi Bucher, Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, Rachel Feinstein, Nan Goldin, Klara Liden, Hilary Lloyd, Sarah Lucas, Joanna Piotrowska, Penny Slinger, Andra Ursula, Marianne Vitale, Francesca Woodman and Andrea Zittel. Room is curated by Laura Lord.
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Andra UrsutaAndrea ZittelBeverly Buchananempty roomsFrancesca WoodmangalleryGroup ShowHeidi BücherHilary LloydinstallationJoanna PiotrowskaKlara LidenLaura LordLouise BourgeoisMarianne VitaleMarvin Gaye Chetwyndmy bedNan GoldinPenny SlingerPhotographyphotomontageRachel FeinsteinRoomSadie ColesSarah LucassurrealismWe Are WIAWIAWomen artistsWomen in Art