Not Just the Perfect Moments. Questioning how to bear witness to the complexities of the past, Davis's artwork is an attempt to reconsider what certain histories could look, sound and feel like.
Kate Davis presents newly commissioned drawings alongside recent works exhibited in London for the first time. Although Davis works across a range of media, drawing remains the critical core of her visual vocabulary; this exhibition will be the first time she addresses her relationship to drawing (as a medium, activity and history) directly.
Questioning how to bear witness to the complexities of the past, Davis's artwork is an attempt to reconsider what certain histories could look, sound and feel like. This has often involved responding to the aesthetic and political ambiguities of historical art works and their reception. Focusing on ideologies perpetuated through certain approaches to the teaching and viewing of drawing, Not Just the Perfect Moments is an attempt, informed by the art and writings of Jo Spence, and by the actions of militant suffragette Mary Raleigh Richardson, to re-examine and unpick some of the ways in which representational practices, such as drawing, have constructed and complicated perceptions of the female body.
Not Just the Perfect Moments will present a new installation drawn from images of works by Jo Spence in various archives; an exploration of instructional drawing material; and Davis's installation Curtain I – VII, which references Mary Raleigh Richardson's slashing of Velasquez's painting The Toilet of Venus at the National Gallery, London in 1914, and the subsequent concealment of that act. Spence's ground-breaking photographic works often questioned who owned images and especially images of the body. In this exhibition, as is the case with much of Davis's practice, photography and drawing are brought into close relation, and both are questioned as techniques for challenging, creating and caring for representations of the body.
Forum and Workshop: I Wish I Could Draw: Saturday 19 January, 1:30–5:30pm. A forum and workshop exploring and questioning the history and practice of teaching, learning and performing representational figure drawing.
In Conversation: Monday 21 January 2013, 6:30pm. Kate Davis with Roger Malbert, Senior Curator, Hayward Touring, London.
Opening 4 december
12 Rich Estate Crimscott Street London
Hours: Tuesday–Friday 11–6pm, Satursday 12 –6pm