Turner Prize winner Lubaina Himid is in demand – but she has still had time to meticulously plan a new exhibition now open at the Walker Art Gallery.
Lubaina Himid: Meticulous Observations and Naming the Money features both works by the Zanzibar-born, Preston-based artist, and also a number of pieces by female artists she has personally chosen from the Arts Council Collection.
The core of the show is concentrated in one room at the William Brown Street attraction, but it also spreads out to include unexpected ‘interventions’ in a number of other locations within the gallery.
Himid’s series of watercolours, Scenes from the life of Toussaint L’Overture – part historical fact about the leader of the Haitian Revolution, part artist’s imagination, are staged next to a bust of American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, by sculptor Edmonia Lewis, and a rare porcelain punchbowl featuring a relief of enslaved Africans.
Works from the Arts Council Collection chosen by Lubaina Himid
And they feature along with paintings and sculptures by artists including Bridget Riley, John Moores Prize winner Lisa Milroy, Frances Hodgkins, and Claudette Johnson’s Woman in Black.
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Meanwhile 20 figures out of 90 from Himid’s Naming the Money series, which she gifted to the International Slavery Museum in 2013, are being placed around the gallery in proximity to works chosen by the artist, including paintings by Rossetti, Hogarth and Sickert.
The two-dimensional statues each portray a different person and trade, and their story is told in verse through an audio installation, which will be sited in the main gallery.
Lubaina Himid at the Walker Art Gallery with one of her Naming the Money artworks
The Arts Council Collection National Partners exhibition has been in the pipeline for more than two years, and gives Liverpool audiences the chance to see some of the 63-year-old artist’s work ahead of the announcement of the 2017 Turner Prize winner in Hull in early December.
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Himid, who is professor of contemporary art at the University of South Lancashire, says: “The artists I have chosen present what may seem like familiar moments or things linked to our everyday lives. But, as you look more closely and carefully, they reveal themselves to be deep contemplations on the artists’ experiences of life.”
Meanwhile Himid will also be back at the Walker in the New Year as one of the judges for the prestigious John Moores Painting Prize, celebrating its 60th year in 2018.
Lubaina Himid: Meticulous Observations and Naming the Money is at the Walker Art Gallery from October 7 to March 18 and is free.