Airports for the Lights, Shadows and Particles – A survey exhibition by Jyll Bradley
25 February – 1 May 2011
It has been 20 years since Jyll Bradley emerged on the art scene alongside Young British Artist contemporaries such as Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin. And in Airports for the Lights, Shadows and Particles, the Bluecoat will show the fruits of Bradley’s labour since those Goldsmiths days with an ambitious survey exhibition. Encompassing photography, text, sound and installation, the exhibition spans the last 20 years of Bradley’s practice, including newly commissioned work.
Bradley employs the form and dynamics of commercial display, such as photographic light-boxes, to explore ideas of identity. She often creates works that respond to place, made through residencies over long periods of engagement.
Through her ongoing project Fragrant Bradley’s focuses on an interest in plants and gardens as being places of growth, and often, as battlefields for utopian aims. The artist has developed Fragrant projects all over the world, from Cornwall to China and South America. In 2007-08 Bradley was Artist in Residence in Liverpool’s historic, yet neglected Botanical Collection, during which she presented an installation in the Bluecoat garden.
Sara-Jayne Parsons, Exhibitions Curator at the Bluecoat said:
“It’s a wonderful opportunity to invite Jyll back to the city, and I am delighted we will be showcasing a survey of work, featuring her very early work which was included in the 1990 British Art Show to her new drawings. People in Liverpool mostly know Jyll for her work with the gardens, but her art work explores many more areas of interest, including literature, faith and portraiture. I think visitors will be surprised by the range of her engaging and generous work.”
The unusual exhibition title comes from a quote by John Cage who once described Robert Rauschenberg’s white paintings as ‘Airports for the lights, shadows and particles’. He recognised that a white surface is sensitive to its surroundings. Reflections arrive and depart, creating a greater awareness of the viewer’s environment and space.
The original version of this exhibition, Naming Spaces, was curated and toured by Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange, Penzance www.newlynartgallery.co.uk
A full programme of forthcoming events and activities associated with this exhibition is available in our Spring brochure or on the Bluecoat website; www.thebluecoat.org.uk