The British Art Show is a national touring exhibition that provides a vital overview of some of the most exciting contemporary art produced in the UK. Organised by Hayward Touring at Southbank Centre, London, and taking place every five years, it introduces a broad public to a new generation of artists. After opening in Leeds Art Gallery in October 2015, British Art Show 8
will tour to multiple venues across Edinburgh, Norwich and Southampton over the course of 15 months, presented in Southampton at John Hansard Gallery and Southampton City Art Gallery. This will be the second time Southampton has hosted this prestigious show, the last time being in 2000 with British Art Show 5
The seventh edition of the exhibition took place in 2010 and 2011 and attracted over 420,000 visitors in its four host cities. The net additional expenditure as a result of the British Art Show was estimated at £3.6 million within one host city and £1.3 million in the wider region. A Hayward Touring exhibition organised in collaboration with galleries in Leeds, Edinburgh, Norwich and Southampton, this year the British Art Show benefits from the exceptional support of Art Council England’s Strategic Touring Programme which will enable new digital platforms, community engagement and artists’ projects outside the gallery.
Curated by Anna Colin and Lydia Yee, British Art Show 8 features the work of 42 artists who have made a significant contribution to art in this country over the past five years. The result of the curators’ research across the UK and beyond is a wide-ranging exhibition that encompasses sculpture, film, video-installation, photography, painting, performance and design. Twenty-six of the artists have created new works especially for the exhibition, making this the most ambitious British Art Show to date.
A central concern of British Art Show 8 is the changing role and status of the object at a time of increasing convergence between the real and the virtual. In response to this condition artists have developed new ways of thinking about, and approaching, materiality. While some revisit traditional craft-based skills or make use of industrial techniques, others use data as a starting point for their work, or investigate the material conditions of our digital existence. Within the exhibition ordinary objects – a car, a hard drive or an egg – are considered as archaeological finds or narrative devices. Operating within a complex web of relationships, these objects reveal new ways of being, thinking and acting in the world.
Artists: Åbäke, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Caroline Achaintre, John Akomfrah and Trevor Mathison, Aaron Angell, Pablo Bronstein, Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin, Andrea Büttner, Alexandre da Cunha, Nicolas Deshayes, Benedict Drew, Simon Fujiwara, Martino Gamper, Ryan Gander, Melanie Gilligan, Anthea Hamilton, Will Holder, Alan Kane, Mikhail Karikis, Linder, Rachel Maclean, Ahmet Ögüt (with Liam Gillick, Susan Hiller and Goshka Macuga), Yuri Pattison, Ciara Phillips, Charlotte Prodger, Laure Prouvost, Magali Reus, James Richards, Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Daniel Sinsel, Cally Spooner, Patrick Staff, Imogen Stidworthy, Hayley Tompkins, Jessica Warboys, Stuart Whipps, Bedwyr Williams, Jesse Wine, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye.
ABOUT THE CURATORS
Anna Colin is co-founder and co-director of Open School East and Associate Curator at Fondation Galeries Lafayette, Paris. Lydia Yee is Chief Curator at Whitechapel Gallery.
ABOUT SOUTHBANK CENTRE
Southbank Centre is the UK’s largest arts centre, occupying a 21-acre site that sits in the midst of London’s most vibrant cultural quarter on the South Bank of the Thames. The site has an extraordinary creative and architectural history stretching back to the 1951 Festival of Britain. Southbank Centre is home to the Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room and the Hayward Gallery as well as The Saison Poetry Library and the Arts Council Collection.
ABOUT HAYWARD TOURING
Hayward Touring produces exhibitions that tour to galleries, museums and other publicly-funded venues throughout Britain. Hayward Touring collaborate with artists, independent curators, writers and partner institutions to develop and tour imaginative exhibitions that are seen by approximately half a million people in over 100 cities and towns each year.