Grundy Art Gallery Autumn 2022

Posted on Wednesday 12th October 2022

Fiona Grady, Art Deco Paradise,- art piece

Blackpool’s popular Grundy Art Gallery will once again be joining up with the Blackpool Illuminations and the town’s Lightpool Festival to celebrate Blackpool’s season of light.

From Mark Leckey, a Turner Prize winning artist, to the prize’s namesake, JMW Turner, an 18th Century master of painting – the programme explores how artists use illuminated and natural light in their work, and how this is used for symbolic, thematic and atmospheric effect.

The programme is supported by a series of talks and workshops, including an opportunity for people to make their own pinhole camera, their own light-activated collage, as well as learning about the nature of starlight.

Elsewhere, works from the Grundy’s light art collection, including work by Tracey Emin, will be exhibited in The Lights, at Bury Art Museum & Sculpture centre from 15 October.

Cllr Lynn Williams, Leader of Blackpool Council and Chair of Grundy’s steering group said,

“Grundy’s exciting autumn programme demonstrates an ongoing commitment to providing Blackpool with the best in contemporary art; and by presenting work both on and off-site, a commitment to providing this offer to ever-more people.”  

Grundy’s autumn season opens to the public on 14 October from 10am and is then open Tues – Sat, 10am – 4.45pm (Last Entry 4.20pm) and will run until Saturday 17th December, (Closed Sun, Mon and Bank Holidays).

Autumn’s Exciting programme and events

Regard the Light

14 October to 17 December

Drawing on Grundy Art Gallery’s collection of paintings as well as the loan of works by JMW Turner (1775-1851), from Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre, Regard the Light is an exhibition that looks at how light is variously used by artists to create drama, atmosphere and symbolic meaning.

Within these works, natural and artificial light is captured streaming in through windows, bouncing off mirrors and reflecting off expanses of water. Light may be the subject of the artwork’s story, or it may be an aside – there to draw the viewers eye to what else is happening in the composition. In addition to key works from Grundy’s own collection, Regard the Light also includes two watercolours and forty prints by JMW Turner from his Liber Studiorum (Latin: Book of Studies) – a portfolio of seventy one prints of landscape and seascape compositions. Often described as, ‘the painter of light’, the works on display show how Turner’s skilled use of contrast and shadow have led to his reputation as a master of high drama.

With thanks to Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre and to artist Louise Giovanelli for exhibition research support. 

Mark Leckey: Sodium Lights

14 October to 17 December

Sodium Lights is an installation that uses repurposed low-pressure sodium streetlights of the kind phased out across the UK in the 1990s.  The colour of the light overwhelms the space and has the effect of rendering the space otherworldly.  Sited in Grundy’s Gallery 1, visitors must journey through the space to access Grundy’s other galleries. In doing so Leckey’s work takes on the atmosphere of a subway or underpass, sites of transition that carry a myriad of associations within the popular imagination.

Mark Leckey (born 1964, Birkenhead) is a contemporary artist working with a variety of media including film, sound, sculpture and performance. His work explores the relationship between popular culture and technology and explores the subjects of anxiety, class and nostalgia. In 2008 he won the Turner Prize for his exhibition Industrial Light and Magic and has had recent solo exhibitions at CABINET Gallery, London and Tate Britain. Mark Leckey last exhibited at Grundy Art Gallery in 2016 with his exhibition, This Kolossal Cat, That Massive MOG. With thanks to CABINET Gallery, London.

Collection Spot: Louise Giovanelli

1 October to 17 December

In 2016, Grundy Art Gallery presented Louise Giovanelli’s first solo exhibition in a public gallery and museum. For that exhibition, Louise generated a series of new paintings that responded to works in the Grundy’s collection, two of which were then acquired into Grundy’s permanent collection. For the next in Grundy’s ongoing series of Collection Spotlight exhibitions, these two works are shown alongside some of the works from the collection that informed them. Included are works that feature the Grundy’s founders, John and Cuthbert Grundy, a gesture that recognises that October is also Grundy’s birthday month having first opened its doors to the public 111 years ago on26  October.

Louise Giovanelli (b.1993, London), is now a contemporary painter with an established national and a growing International reputation. She has become recognised for her ability to create deeply evocative and luminous artworks that demonstrate her ongoing interest in the exploration of paint, painting and light. Her recent solo exhibitions include White Cube gallery, London, GRIMM gallery New York and Manchester Art Gallery. Her work is included in private and public collections worldwide including, Government Art Collection, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester and Institute of Contemporary Art Miami. 

With her ongoing interest in the exploration of light in her work, it is also fitting that Louise has also provided research support for our accompanying exhibition, Regard the Light, alongside which additional works by Giovanelli are being displayed. 

Forecourt Commission: Fiona Grady

28 October to 7 January

This autumn, artist Fiona Grady has been invited to develop new work for Grundy’s ongoing series of Forecourt Commissions. Born into a family of mathematicians Grady always employs a systematic approach to intervene within a space.  Through her use of light, colour, shape, surface and scale, her colourful geometric artworks transform their setting and provide a unique response to the specifics of the place in which they are located. Activated by changes in the direction and intensity of daylight Grady’s work quietly marks the passing of time whilst also providing a dynamic contribution to Grundy’s 2022 season of light.

Fiona Grady: (b. 1984, Leeds) studied MA Fine Art at Wimbledon College of Art, University of the Arts London. Recent solo exhibitions include the University of Brighton; Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff and Art House Wakefield. She has been commissioned worldwide by organisations and institutions including: Pitzhanger Manor & Gallery, Canary Wharf Group, ITV, Heals London, Watts Gallery Artists’ Village and NHS Nightingale Project. She was awarded the Mark Rothko Memorial Trust Bursary. Her works are held in public and private collections across Europe, North America, and New Zealand. 

Blackpool Stands Between Us and Revolution: Tom Ireland 

On now until 17 December

Blackpool Stands Between Us and Revolution is an illuminated text-based artwork temporarily sited on the roof of Grundy Art Gallery. The work takes the form of a large-scale rendering of a quote attributed to an anonymous local businessperson in 1926. Reportedly spoken to the British garden designer, landscape architect and town planner Thomas Hayton Mawson (1861- 1933) – who oversaw the design of Blackpool’s Stanley Park – the phrase underlines the vital role of Blackpool within the lives of working people as a place for recreation and release. Blackpool Stands between Us and Revolution is the result of a 2019 open commission opportunity led by Blackpool Council’s Arts Service to provide Blackpool with a number of new permanent and temporary public realm art works. The work will become part of Grundy Art Gallery’s permanent collection, adding to its growing selection of light art works that currently includes work by Tracey Emin, Tony Heaton OBE, Chila Kumari Singh Burman, and Joseph Kosuth among others.  

Tom Ireland (b.1984, Blackpool) has a practice that spans a variety of media and centres on broad notions of space, distance and co-existence. His works utilise subtle intervention and place great emphasis on slight gestures, designed to unlock new meanings and possibilities. Ireland has exhibited works at/with a wide range of institutions and organisations such as Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art (Gateshead), Whitworth Art Gallery (Manchester), Whitechapel Gallery (London), Deptford X (London), FRAC Champagne-Ardennes (Reims, FR) and Eastside Projects (Birmingham). In 2019, four of Ireland’s works were acquired into the collection of FRAC Champagne-Ardenne (Reims, FR). 

Posted on Wednesday 12th October 2022

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