Body Poetics: GIANT, Bournemouth

18 February - 6 May 2023

Louise Bourgeois and Holly Stevenson

Helen Chadwick and Rosie Gibbens

Judy Chicago and Ad Minoliti

Guerrilla Girls and Evan Ifekoya

Senga Nengudi and Enam Gbewonyo

Niki de Saint Phalle and Rae-Yen Song

Carolee Schneemann and Florence Peake

Kiki Smith and Charlotte Edey

Penny Slinger and Tai Shani


GIANT presents Body Poetics, a group exhibition pairing nine feminist artists working at the advent of feminist theory in the 1970’s and 80’s with a contemporary artist from a younger generation. Curated by Marcelle Joseph and Becca Pelly-Fry, Body Poetics will run 18 February – 6 May 2023.


Judith Butler wrote in Bodies That Matter (1993) that it is impossible to ‘consider the materiality of the body’ as bodies cannot be fixed ‘as simple objects of thought’. Instead, bodies are ‘a world beyond themselves’. ‘This movement beyond their own boundaries, a movement of boundary itself, appeared to be quite central to what bodies “are”.’ Much like poetry, bodies are constructed. Instead of words, bodies are constructed by society through relations of power. In this exhibition, the body is set in motion, much like the words of a poem. Where the words are placed and in what order changes the meaning, the feeling or the aesthetics of the words on the page. In this exhibition, gender performativity takes centre stage in a way that claims critical agency and is not bound by the structures of patriarchal society. 


In direct contradiction to the Lacanian narrative, creating cultural meaning for these 18 artists does not require the repression of their relationship to the feminine/femme/queer or maternal body. Instead, their artistic language subverts the paternal law of ‘the Symbolic’ and becomes a poetic language in which multiple meanings and semantic nonclosure prevail. The recovery of the feminine/femme/queer body by the artists in this exhibition disrupts, subverts and displaces the normative constraints of patriarchal society and becomes poetry in their hands.


Featuring a range of works made from the 1970’s to the present and across the mediums of painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography, video, performance, textile and sound, Body Poetics is a feminist provocation across time and space that explores the outer limits of what a body can be, using the broadest sense of the word ‘feminist’ to include all female-identifying, non-binary and trans artists. 


Louise Bourgeois and Holly Stevenson share an interest in psychoanalysis; their work explores the inner workings of the human psyche through tactile materials such as textiles and ceramics. Both Bourgeois and Stevenson are deeply involved in the excavation of repressed emotions, analysing them through bodily symbolism and the physical act of making. Bourgeois once said, ‘Art is a guarantee of sanity’; Stevenson vigorously concurs with that statement, remarking ‘Feminist art is a guarantee of female sanity’.


Helen Chadwick and Rosie Gibbens both employ humour as a way to subvert patriarchal systems and challenge stereotypical perceptions of the body. Often inserting themselves into their artwork by positioning their bodies as absurd objects, they upturn ideas of functionality and the domestic in relation to the female/femme body in our constructed environment. Binary oppositions also feature in both artists’ work, in particular, seduction/repulsion and beauty/abjection, forging gender representations that ooze with ambiguity and a disquieting sexuality that blurs the boundaries of the body. 


Judy Chicago and Ad Minoliti are united in the use of abstract iconography, a vivid colour palette and symbolic imagery to explore and redefine societal categorisation of the body and the gendered experience. Chicago developed a distinctive visual language to define the female experience, surfacing erased stories and achievements of women; Minoliti further unpacks normative categories through presenting visions of a post-humanist non-binary multiverse, playfully blurring lines between human, animal, plant and technology. 


Guerrilla Girls and Evan Ifekoya employ visually and viscerally different approaches to activism and social justice. Guerrilla Girls use the bold, graphic language of advertising to subvert the medium and call out injustice and speak truth to power. Evan Ifekoya makes a call for radical self-love and empowerment through inner healing in order to reclaim space within colonial-built systems that allow little or none.


Senga Nengudi and Enam Gbewonyo have a shared interest in everyday materials, particularly tights or pantyhose, which reference the female/femme body literally and figuratively. Performing with and around the objects they make, both artists activate their own bodies to reach a deeper understanding of their lived experiences. Both artists could be viewed as modern-day healers, connecting contemporary Western culture with ancestral African traditions and practices: Senga Nengudi’s assumed name translates as ‘hear, or listen to, the woman who comes to power as a traditional healer’, and Gbewonyo has said, ‘ultimately my work seeks to deliver the collective consciousness to a place of awareness through healing’. 


Niki de Saint Phalle and Rae-Yen Song both envision new ways of inhabiting the world, employing a joyful sense of play. Multi-disciplinary and often monumental in their creativity, both artists create a vibrantly hued universe of mythological creatures, consisting of human and non-human bodies, where alternative realities are proposed and ownership over biographical narratives is reclaimed.


Carolee Schneemann and Florence Peake are deeply engaged with physicality and materiality across their respective interdisciplinary practices that span performance, film, photography, installation, painting and sculpture. These artists examine the social construction of the female/femme/queer body through the positioning of bodies (often their own) alongside a myriad of materials, interrogating the body as site and vehicle of political protest, pain and suffering as well as joy, sexual expression and creativity. Schneemann famously retorted that she performed the roles of ‘both image and image-maker’, a statement that equally applies to Peake’s transgressive practice.


Kiki Smith and Charlotte Edey share many mediums in common across their artistic practices, working in drawing, printmaking, embroidery and tapestry to explore gendered subjectivity in relation to mortality, gender, race, sexuality, women’s rights and the politics of space. Both artists draw on myth, mysticism and folklore to create images of the sublime, rooted in lived experience. 


Penny Slinger and Tai Shani delve into mysticism, surrealism and the occult to uproot dominant narratives, presenting futuristic and fantastical visions of a post-patriarchal future. Using a wide range of visual references, from Tantric mystical teachings to science fiction, and working across a diverse array of media, these artists create temples to the divine feminine, imagining non-hierarchical futures through fluid mythologies. 


Each of these artists, although producing predominantly two and three-dimensional work, make works that perform on or around the body in a poetic way.  During the opening night, Thursday 16 February 2023, Rosie Gibbens will activate her sculptural works through performance. With her body in motion, the artist will participate in lively dialogue with the performative photographs of Helen Chadwick that document a performance that took place in the 1970’s, involving the artist’s own body in a rich discourse rooted in feminist theory. 


GIANT, a 15,000 square foot gallery in Bournemouth, opened in Summer 2021. The largest artist-led space in the UK, it is situated within a historic building in the heart of the town centre and has already featured important works by major international artists including Turner Prize Winner Jeremy Deller, British photographer Martin Parr, artist-activist Kacey Wong, installation artist Jim Lambie and YBAs Jake and Dinos Chapman, Gavin Turk and most recently Michael Simpson. GIANT’s exhibitions to date have remained true to its promise to be accessible, entertaining, exciting, challenging and open; bringing many of the world’s greatest contemporary artists to Bournemouth for the first time they have garnered visitor figures that rival some of London’s most loved institutions. 


Founded by British contemporary artist Stuart Semple, GIANT is programmed to feature works by some of the best-known international artists and new pieces by inspiring yet largely unknown creators from around the globe, aiming to start dialogues across hierarchies, histories and cultures. It is hoped that a conversation around the opportunity to integrate art into life in new ways might emerge. Or, at the very least, a recognition of art’s vital role in our connection with one another, our communities and our future.





GIANT (Gallery of Innovation and Anti Normal Thinking) is a 15000 sq ft artist-run space in Bournemouth. Founded by British artist Stuart Semple, GIANT occupies the entire second floor of a former Debenhams building in the town centre and is dedicated to presenting challenging works by some of the world’s most respected contemporary artists, bringing many to Bournemouth for the first time. Exhibited artists to date include: The Chapman Brothers; Jeremy Deller; Jim Lambie; Martin Parr; Mark Tichner; Gavin Turk; and Kacey Wong. Launched in Summer 2021, GIANT has already gained critical and public acclaim, being covered in major publications including the Times, where it was branded “Saatchi-on-Sea,” as well as the Observerthe Telegraph and the Daily Mail.


As the largest arts centre of its kind on the South Coast, since its launch GIANT has engaged audiences with contemporary visual art, through a program of major exhibitions, projects and events, including several major international-level shows. With visitor figures that rival some of London’s most loved institutions GIANT has lead a cultural sea change and has proved itself a key part in Bournemouth’s resurgence as a major coastal creative centre. 


About Marcelle Joseph

Marcelle Joseph is an independent curator based in London. In 2011, Joseph founded Marcelle Joseph Projects, a nomadic curatorial platform that has produced 44 exhibitions in the UK and the rest of Europe, featuring the work of over 250 international artists. Joseph holds an MA in Art History with Distinction from Birkbeck, University of London with a specialisation in feminist art practice. Her curatorial work focuses on gender and the performative construction of identity with an emphasis on material-led artistic practices. Joseph is the executive editor of Korean Art: The Power of Now (Thames & Hudson, 2013). Additionally, in London, Joseph is the Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of Mimosa House, and a member of the Advisory Board of Procreate Project, and the Selection Panel of PLOP Residency. She served on the jury of the 2017-2019 Max Mara Art Prize for Women, in collaboration with the Whitechapel Gallery and Collezione Maramotti, and the Mother Art Prize 2018. She also collects artworks by female-identifying artists under the collecting partnership, GIRLPOWER Collection, as well as more generally as part of the Marcelle Joseph Collection. In 2022, her collection was on public display for the first time in the UK in a travelling exhibition co-curated by Joseph launched at the Rugby Art Gallery & Museum, Rugby. Joseph also co-curated her first museum exhibition in the United States in 2022 at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles titled The Condition of Being Addressable. In 2023, she will launch the GIRLPOWER Residency, together with her collecting partner, in the Aquitaine area of southwestern France.


About Becca Pelly-Fry  

Becca Pelly-Fry is an independent curator, writer and cultural consultant. Originally trained as a sculptor at Northumbria University, she specialises in working with emerging to mid-career artists, creating immersive experiences that encourage interaction and dialogue between art, artist and audience. Her curatorial practice encompasses an interest in materiality and the process of making, through to explorations of human/non-human relationships, symbiosis with the natural world, healing and spirituality. Pelly-Fry was previously Director and Curator of Griffin Gallery (2013-2018) and Head Curator for Elephant West, a large experimental art space in White City, for its first year of operation (2018-2019). She has been a visiting lecturer for Tokyo University, UAL, ArtQuest, Oxford Brookes, City & Guilds London and New Platform Arts Lab, and is a mentor with Arts Emergency. Recent exhibitions and projects have included: Perfectionism IV: A Trick of the Eye, in collaboration with OpenArt Advisory (NY); The Healing Collective presents: The Spring Gathering at San Mei Gallery, Brixton, London; King & McGaw Curated Editions: New Mythologies at OHSH Projects, New Oxford Street, London; The Healing Collective presents: A Space for Healing at GIANT, Bournemouth. Pelly-Fry is also a Master Level Reiki practitioner, and a passionate advocate of holistic practices for individual and collective wellbeing.




Louise Bourgeois (b. 1911, France; d. 2010, United States) is recognized as one of the most important and influential artists of the last century. For over seven decades, Bourgeois’s creative process mined a variety of themes inextricably entwined with her life and experiences, including the trauma of childhood, domesticity and the family, sexuality and the body, and death and the unconscious. Rather than pursuing formalist concerns for their own sake, Bourgeois endeavoured to find the most appropriate means of expressing her ideas and emotions, utilising a wide range of materials including fabric, plaster, wood, latex, marble, bronze and an inventive repertoire of found objects. Although she is best known for her large-scale sculpture and installation art, Bourgeois was also a painter and prolific printmaker. Bourgeois’s work has much in common with Abstract Expressionist, Surrealist and Feminist artists; however, she was not formally affiliated with a particular artistic movement. Bourgeois’s work was included in the seminal exhibition ‘Eccentric Abstraction,’ curated by Lucy Lippard for New York’s Fischbach Gallery in 1966. Major breakthroughs on the international scene followed her 1982 retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York: she participated in Documenta IX in 1992 and represented the United States at the 45th Venice Biennale in 1993. In 2001, Bourgeois was the first artist commissioned to fill the Tate Modern’s cavernous Turbine Hall. The Tate Modern’s 2007 retrospective of her works, which subsequently travelled to the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France; The Guggenheim Museum in New York, NY; The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, CA; and The Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden in Washington D.C., cemented her legacy as one of the foremost artists of our time.


Helen Chadwick (b. 1953, United Kingdom; d. 1996, United Kingdom) was a pioneering British conceptual artist who expanded the boundaries of artistic convention by challenging bodily taboos and embracing unconventional, often repulsive materials - including rotting vegetables, chocolate, and urine - as subjects for her multidisciplinary artistic practice.  Drawing upon universal but also deeply personal languages, she explored the meeting and union of various dualities, including pleasure and disgust, beauty and abjection, male and female, and organic and man-made, and in doing so pushed her work into unchartered territory. Chadwick studied at Brighton Polytechnic and the Chelsea College of Arts. In 1987, she became one of the first women artists to be nominated for the Turner Prize, and she represented Great Britain at the 1994 São Paulo Biennial in Brazil. Through her teaching posts at art schools in and around London in the 1980s and ’90s, she influenced a generation of British artists and had a formative impact on the YBA cohort of artists in London. Chadwick's 1986 exhibition 'Of Mutability', which opened at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, is considered a seminal point in the breakthrough of the YBA movement. Important solo exhibitions include 'Wreaths to Pleasure', Henry Moore Institute, Leeds, UK (2012); 'Helen Chadwick: A Retrospective', Barbican Art Gallery, London, UK (2004), which travelled to the Manchester City Art Gallery, Manchester, UK; Kunstmuseet Trapholt, Kolding, Denmark and Liljevalch Konsthall, Stockholm, Sweden; and 'Bad Blooms', Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY (1995), which travelled to Norrköpings Konstmuseum, Norrköpings, Sweden; Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, IN; and Uppsala Konstmuseum, Uppsala, Sweden. 


Judy Chicago (b. 1939, United States; based in Belen, New Mexico) has worked for six decades pioneering feminist art and art education as a prolific artist, author, and teacher. In the early 1970s, Chicago worked to expand educational opportunities for women artists. She developed the country's first art program for women in 1970–71 at California State University, Fresno, and the following year she teamed with artist Miriam Schapiro to establish the Feminist Art Program at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). Chicago's projects have often been collaborative in nature, from The Dinner Party (1974–79) to Resolutions: A Stitch in Time (1994–2000). In addition to such high-profile group endeavours, she creates individual works in many different media, including drawing, painting, needlework, textiles, bronze, glass and pyrotechnics. Chicago's choice of materials, imagery, and means of production intentionally subvert traditional notions of fine art. She deliberately chooses modes of aesthetic practice often considered to be craft, decoration, or kitsch, embracing categories that historically have been marginalised as ‘women's work’ in order to place gender politics and social commentary at the centre of her art. As an artist, Chicago’s multidisciplinary practice celebrates the multiplicity of female identity. Over the past four years Chicago’s work has been exhibited in a broad range of major thematic group shows such as ‘Pacific Standard Time: Made in LA’ at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; ‘Ends of the Earth’ at Haus der Kunst, Berlin, Germany; ‘Pretty Raw: After and Around Helen Frankenthaler’ at the Rose Art Museum; Waltham, MA and ‘The World Goes Pop’ at Tate Modern, London. Recent museum surveys include ‘Judy Chicago: A Reckoning’ at the ICA Miami, Miami, FL (2018); ‘The End: A Meditation on Death and Extinction’ at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, D.C. (2019) and her first retrospective at The De Young Museum, San Francisco, CA (2021). 


Niki de Saint Phalle (b. 1930, France; d. 2002, United States) was a French-American artist  who, over half a century, forged a radical, interdisciplinary practice marked by constant innovation, creating works that are feminist, collaborative, and monumental. Born in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, and raised in New York City, she moved to Paris in 1952 and immersed herself in the avant-garde. In 1961, she became the only female member of the Nouveaux Réalistes following the first performances of her Tirs (Shooting Paintings), wherein she and invited participants (eventually including Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg) fired a rifle at plaster reliefs embedded with bags of paint to create spontaneous compositions. In 1965, she initiated her exuberant Nana sculptures of the feminine form. Her largest, HON (1966, made with artists Jean Tinguely and Per Olof Ultvedt), filled the entire exhibition hall of Moderna Museet, Stockholm, and was entered through a doorway positioned between the figure’s thighs. From the late 1960s onward, Saint Phalle expanded her practice to include architectural projects, sculpture gardens, books, prints, films, theatre sets, and jewellery. Her work often engaged social issues, particularly women’s rights, climate change, and AIDS awareness. In 1979 she broke ground on Tarot Garden, a massive installation in Tuscany that opened to the public in 1998, living within one of its structures for several years. She moved to La Jolla, California, in 1993, continuing her public sculpture projects until her death. Among the many retrospectives and travelling surveys dedicated to Saint Phalle’s artwork are those organised by Centre Pompidou, Paris, France (1980); Kunst-und Ausstellungshalle, Bonn, Germany (1992); Sprengel Museum, Hanover, Germany (2000); Musée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain, Nice, France (2002); Grand Palais, Paris, France (2014); MoMA PS1, New York, NY (2021); and Menil Collection, Houston, TX (2021). In 2000, she was awarded the Praemium Imperiale for Sculpture from the Japan Art Association.


Charlotte Edey (b. 1992, United Kingdom; based in London) is a British artist and illustrator who graduated from the prestigious Royal Drawing School in London in 2022 after studying Visual Communication and Illustration at the Chelsea School of Art and Design in London in 2011. Her work is primarily concerned with contemporary issues of selfhood. Cultural signifiers and personal mythologies shape ongoing narratives through a process of world-building. The politics of space are explored through the lens of identity; how the intersections of identities both shape our interior landscapes and define the structuring that we navigate externally. Her imagined realms are peppered with symbolist motifs that connote the body politic, magic, the erotic, biracialism and gender. Her process combines tapestry, embroidery and sculptural wood as an expansion of her drawing practice. This journey between dimensions from her works on paper – what is added, altered and even removed by these multiple processes – creates a layered complexity in both material and theme. Mark-making and gesture are explored through hand-embroidery in silk, forging a relationship between drawn line and thread. Her installations reference ritualistic methods of display from altarpieces to shrines, forming portals to imagined otherworlds that offer the opportunity to investigate our present.  Solo shows include those at Roberts Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland (2022), PUBLIC Gallery, London, UK (2019) and Flowers Gallery, London, UK (2018). Recent group shows include: ‘Bloomberg New Contemporaries’, South London Gallery, London, UK (2022); ‘Supermarket’, Design Museum, London, UK (2021); ‘Body en Thrall’, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, Rugby, UK (2022); ‘New Mythologies II’, Huxley Parlour, London, UK (2022); ‘Psychic Anemone’, Cob Gallery, London, UK (2021); ‘Subversive Stitch’, TJ Boulting, London, UK (2019); and ‘The Great Women Artists’,Palazzo Monti, Brescia, Italy (2019).


Enam Gbewonyo (b. 1980, United Kingdom; based in London) is a British Ghanaian artist who began her career as a knitwear designer in New York after completing her BA in Textile Design at Bradford School of Art and Design, Bradford, UK in 2001. Her practice investigates identity, womanhood and humanity through the mediums of textile and performance. Gbewonyo also advocates handcraft’s spiritual healing powers, using processes like embroidery, knitting, weaving, print and wirework. By using craft as her portal, the artist pushes us to face the truth of a dark global history and the emotions it brings forth. Performance using movement and the spoken word entered her practice as another vehicle for Gbewonyo to tell the stories and personal epiphanies she was unearthing, creating powerful live spaces for healing, both for the artist and her audiences. Her work was presented in her first solo exhibition at TAFETA Gallery, London, UK in July 2021. Recent group exhibitions include: ‘Temporary Atlas’, MOSTYN, Llandudno, Wales (2022); ‘What Lies Beneath: Women, Politics, Textiles’, Murray Edwards College, Cambridge, UK (2022); ‘Hapticity: A Theory of Touch and Identity’, Lychee One, London, UK (2021); ‘Social Fabric’, Fold Gallery, London, UK (2021); ‘Memoria’, Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine MÉCA, Bordeaux, France (2021); ‘Antisocial Isolation’, Saatchi Gallery, London, UK (2020); ‘GOSSAMER’, Carl Freedman Gallery, Margate, UK (2019); ‘BBFA Presents’, TAFETA Gallery, London, UK (2018); and ‘The Gallery of Small Things’, Centre Culturel Douta Seck, Dakar, Senegal (2018). Recent performances include: ‘We Invoke the Black. To Rest’ (an activation of the Lynette Yiadom-Boakye exhibition in collaboration with sound artist Liz Gre); Tate Britain, London, UK (2020); ‘Nude Me/Under the Skin: Unbinding a Path to Black Women’s Healing One Pantyhose at a Time’, Two Temple Place, London, UK (2020); ‘Nude Me/Under the Skin: TheAwakening of Black Women’s Visibility One Pantyhose at a Time’, Carl Freedman Gallery, Margate, UK, Christie’s London, UK and The Palace of Ritual, Palazzo Donà, Venice Biennale, Italy (2019); and ‘agbegbɔgbɔ’ (an activation of the Senga Nengudi exhibition at Henry Moore Institute, Leeds, UK (2019) in partnership with International Curators Forum (ICF)). Gbewonyo is also the founder of the Black British Female Artist (BBFA) Collective, a platform to support emerging Black women artists in building sustainable careers whilst working to advocate for more inclusivity in the British arts landscape. 


Rosie Gibbens (b. 1993, UK; based in London) is a multi-disciplinary artist who primarily makes performances, videos and sculptures that feature her own body. Using absurd humour across her practice, she explores gender performativity, sexual politics and consumer desire. Gibbens describes imagining herself as an ‘alien visitor trying to participate seamlessly in contemporary life, but not quite managing.’ She unravels things which chime strangely and draws illogical conclusions, repeatedly manifesting through the misuse of objects and garments. These are often re-purposed for ‘chain reactions’ which achieve simple tasks in overly-complicated ways. Many of these interactions also have sexual connotations and she often exhausts the euphemistic qualities of her object-collaborators. Gibbens repeatedly approaches her work as perverse product demonstrations or adverts, as a way to think about the cross-over between desire for bodies and desire for commodities.  Rosie studied an MFA in 'Contemporary Art Practice: Performance' at the Royal College of Art and a BA in 'Performance Design and Practice' at Central Saint Martins in London. Selected exhibitions/ performances include: ‘The New Me’, Daata, Expo, Chicago, IL (2022); ‘Skin of My Teeth’, Fierce Festival, Midlands Art Centre, Birmingham, UK (2022); ‘Girl meets Girl’, Vestfossen Kunstlaboratorium, Norway, Sweden (2022); ‘Soft Girls’, Zabludowicz Collection, London, UK (2021); ‘The Artist is Online’, König Gallery, Berlin, Germany (2021); ‘Balls’ Oof Gallery, London, UK (2021); ‘Ridiculous’, Elephant West, London, UK (2020) and ‘Hen Night’, Salon Acme, Mexico City, Mexico (2020). She has been an artist in residence at the Sarabande Foundation (2021-22) and is shortlisted for the Ingram Prize (2022).


Guerrilla Girls (established 1985) are anonymous artist activists who use disruptive headlines, outrageous visuals and killer statistics to expose gender and ethnic bias and corruption in art, film, politics and pop culture. They believe in an intersectional feminism that fights for human rights for all people. They undermine the idea of a mainstream narrative by revealing the understory, the subtext, the overlooked and the downright unfair. They have done hundreds of projects (street posters, banners, actions, books and videos) all over the world. They also do interventions and exhibitions at art museums, blasting them on their own walls for their bad behavior and discriminatory practices, including a stealth projection on the façade of the Whitney Museum about income inequality and the super rich hijacking art. Their retrospectives and travelling exhibitions have attracted thousands. Their book, Guerrilla Girls: The Art of Behaving Badly, collects hundreds of projects from 1985 to 2020, and was named one of the best art books of 2020 by the New York Times and Los Angeles Times.  Recently, their work was at Tate Modern and Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK; São Paulo Museum of Art, São Paulo, Brazil; the Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy; Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands; Museum of Military History, Dresden, Germany; Art Basel Hong Kong, China; and many other places.


Evan Ifekoya (b. 1988, Nigeria; based in London) is an interdisciplinary artist whose work in community organising, installation, performance, sound, text and video is an extension of their calling as a spiritual practitioner. They view art as a site where resources can be both redistributed and renegotiated, whilst challenging the implicit rules and hierarchies of public and social space. Through archival and sonic investigations, they speculate on blackness in abundance.  Strategies of space holding through architectural interventions, ritual, sound and workshops enable them to make a practice of living in order not to turn to despair. Their ongoing investigation considers the somatic experience of listening, the healing potential of sound and spiritual ecologies.They established the collectively run and QTIBPOC (queer, trans*, intersex, black and people of colour) led Black Obsidian Sound System (B.O.S.S.) in 2018. Upcoming presentations include immersive installations for Lagos Biennial (2023) and Aspex Portsmouth (2024). They have presented exhibitions, moving image and performances across the UK, Europe and Internationally, most recently: a solo exhibition at Migros Museum, Zurich and a moving image commission with LUX in collaboration with University of Reading (2022); Herbert Art Gallery and Museum as nominees of the Turner Prize (with B.O.S.S. 2021); Gus Fischer New Zealand (2020); De Appel Netherlands (2019) and Gasworks London (2018). They were awarded the Paul Hamlyn bursary in 2021, the Kleinwort Hambros Emerging Artists Prize in 2019 and the Arts Foundation Award for Live Art sponsored by the Yoma Sasberg Estate in 2017. Their works are held in a number of public collections including Arts Council England, Migros Museum Zurich and Walker Art Gallery Liverpool.


Ad Minoliti (b. 1980, Argentina; based in Buenos Aires) draws on the rich legacy of geometric abstraction in Latin America to produce alternative universes influenced by feminist and queer thought. Merging ideas from modern art and architecture, ethics, science and subcultures, Minoliti constructs new worlds where colour, line and form are the building blocks in her vibrantly coloured installations that are often populated with trans-species furry creatures that disrupt the binary divisions between male and female, terrestrial and alien, biology and technology, and art and everyday life. They have participated in several residencies such as Gasworks and URRA Projects in London, UK, FRAC Pays De La Loire in Loire, France, and Kadist in San Francisco, CA. Their work has been exhibited at galleries, institutions, and museums in China, Japan, Brazil, Peru, Spain, Korea, Bolivia, Chile, among other countries. Recent projects were produced at the Museum of Modern Art of Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina; MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA; MCA Chicago,Chicago, IL; Kunsthalle Lissabon, Lisbon, Portugal; and Tallinn Art Hall, Tallinn,Estonia. Recent solo shows include those at BALTIC, Newcastle, UK; Tate St Ives, Cornwall, United Kingdom; CCCOD, Tours, France; and La Casa Encendida, Madrid, Spain. They participated in the 13th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea (2021); 58th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (2019); Front Cleveland Triennale, Cleveland, OH (2018); Aichi Triennale, Aichi, Japan (2016); and X Bienal del Mercosur, Porto Alegre, Brazil (2015).


Senga Nengudi (b. 1943, United States; based in Colorado Springs, United States) emerged in the 1970s as a conceptual sculptor at the forefront of the Black American avant-garde in Los Angeles. Working at the intersection of sculpture, installation and performance, she reimagines Post-Minimalism in terms of the Black female body, experimenting with discarded materials, ritual and collaboration (most profoundly, her five-decade dialogue with the artist Maren Hassinger). With influences ranging from free jazz and spoken word to Yoruba mythology, Japanese theatre and Brazilian Constructivism, her work is characterised by elasticity, movement and flux. Her iconic series of performative installations R.S.V.P. (1976–) comprise pantyhose filled with sand, knotted, and pinned to the walls or ceiling; for Water Compositions (1970), viewers were invited to prod volumes of colored liquid sealed in vinyl. While earning degrees in art and dance from California State University, Los Angeles, CA (BA, 1966; MA, 1971), she worked at the energised spaces of the Watts Towers Arts Center and the Pasadena Art Museum in Los Angeles, CA and spent a formative year at Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan. In the 1970s, alongside David Hammons, she belonged to the loosely organised collective Studio Z. Her earliest exhibitions were held at the legendary gallery Just Above Midtown (JAM) in New York, NY. Recently, the survey ‘Senga Nengudi: Topologies’ was organised by Lenbachhaus, Munich, Germany (2019) and travelled to Museu de Arte de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil (2020), Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO (2020), and Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA (2021). Her work has been the subject of many solo exhibitions at museums around the world, and has featured in such significant group exhibitions as ‘Soul of a Nation’ (2017); ‘We Wanted A Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965–85’ (2017);  ‘Now Dig This! Art and Black Los Angeles 1960–1980’ (2011); and ‘WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution’ (2007). In 2023, Nengudi was awarded the Nasher Sculpture Prize.


Florence Peake (b. 1973, United Kingdom; based in London) is a London-based artist and choreographer trained in performance and dance who is known for an approach which is at once sensual and witty, expressive and rigorous, political and intimate. Peake produces movement, interactive sculpture, paintings, text, film and drawings that respond and intercept each other to articulate ideas related to materiality and physicality: the body as site and vehicle of protest; the erotic and sensual as tools for queering materiality; the subjective and imagined body as a force equal to those that move in our objective flesh-bound world. By encouraging chaotic relationships between the body and material, Peake creates radical and outlandish performances, which in turn generate temporary alliances and micro-communities within the audience. Peake’s painting is as an extension of the body itself: it is produced gesturally and performatively, and is both a manifestation of the external body in motion and the way personal experience and feeling is recorded within the tissue and bones. Peake’s painting practice comes together with sculpture and performance in a reciprocal nature: engaging in a shared dialogue and creating multiple modes of processing performance, and the interrelations between dancers, audiences and sites. Her interdisciplinary work, made both independently and collaboratively, has been exhibited and performed nationally and internationally since 1995 in New York, Paris, Rome, London, San Francisco, Seattle, Prague, Sweden and Latvia. Peake’s work has been commissioned by and shown at prestigious institutions such as the British Art Show 09 that toured throughout the United Kingdom (2021-22); National Gallery, London, UK (2021); 58th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (2019); Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France (2018); De la Warr Pavilion, Bexhill on Sea, UK (2018); Crac Occitanie, Sète, France (2018); Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK (2013); Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield, UK (2012); and National Portrait Gallery, London, UK (2008).


Carolee Schneemann (b. 1939, United States; d. 2019, United States) was a radical artist who remains a feminist icon and point of reference for numerous contemporary artists to this day. She began as a painter during the 1950s after completing her MFA from the University of Illinois. In 1961, she moved with her then partner, the composer James Tenney, to New York, where they engaged and collaborated with the growing avant-garde movement and community of artists, writers, musicians and filmmakers, from contemporaries such as Claes Oldenberg, Jim Dine and Robert Whitman to older, more established figures including Stan Brakhage, Maya Deren and Carl Ruggles. Within this experimental scene, Schneemann began to experiment with new media and forms of art-making, from performance to film, and co-founded and choreographed for the groundbreaking Judson Dance Theater. Her work, from painting-constructions and assemblages to kinetic multimedia installations, transcended the boundaries of media and discipline. Meat Joy (performed in Paris, London and New York in 1964) marked a milestone for the artist, producing a platform from which Schneemann challenged perceptions within art. Other celebrated pieces include self-shot erotic film, Fuses (1965), and the provocative performance Interior Scroll (1975, 1977). Through these works, which incorporated her physical body and subjective experience, Schneemann reshaped discourse on gender, sexuality and the body, insisting on her status as both image and image-maker. Collapsing the personal and the political, Schneemann also engaged significantly with international politics, issues of censorship, and images of violence, as in the anti-Vietnam War film Viet-Flakes (1965). A feature length film on Schneemann's work and history entitled Breaking the Frame by Marielle Nitoslawska was completed in 2012. In September 2022, ‘Body Politics’ - the first major survey of Schneemann's work in the UK - opened at the Barbican Centre in London. Schneemann's extensive retrospective ‘Kinetic Painting’ opened at Museum Der Moderne in Salzburg, Austria in 2015 before travelling to the Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main, Germany and MoMA PS1, New York in 2017. A major monograph, Carolee Schneemann: Unforgivable, was published by Black Dog in December 2015. Schneemann's work has also been exhibited worldwide at institutions including Tate Modern, London, UK; Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Reina Sophia Museum, Madrid, Spain; Haus der Kunst, Germany; Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, UK; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Ireland; and Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY. In 1997, a retrospective of her work entitled ‘Carolee Schneemann: Up To And Including Her Limits' was held at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, NY. In 2017, Schneemann was awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 57th Venice Biennale.


Tai Shani (b. 1976, United Kingdom; based in London) is a multidisciplinary artist who produces performances, films, photographs, paintings and installations that revolve around experimental narrative texts. Shani creates violent, erotic and fantastical images told in a dense, floral language which re-imagines female otherness as a perfect totality, set in a world complete with cosmologies, myth and histories that negate patriarchal narratives. These alternate between familiar stylistic tropes and structures and theoretical prose in order to explore the construction of subjectivity, excess and the effects of the epic as the ground for a post-patriarchal realism. Tai Shani's project DC Productions (2014-2019) proposed an allegorical city of women; it was an experimental and expanded adaptation of Christine de Pizan's 1405 pioneering feminist book, The Book of the City of Ladies, within which Christine builds an city for notable women drawn from a medieval conception of history, where fact, fiction and myth are blurred. This non-hierarchical approach also determined the construction of the characters and narrative of DC. The collected texts were published in 2019 as Our Fatal Magic. Shani is the joint 2019 Turner Prize winner together with Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Helen Cammock and Oscar Murillo. In 2019, Tai was a Max Mara Art Prize for Women nominee. Her work has been shown at British Art Show 09, Touring, UK (2021-22); CentroCentro, Madrid, Spain (2019-20); Turner Contemporary, Margate, UK (2019); Grazer Kunstverein, Graz, Austria (2019); Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK (2019); Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin, Italy (2019); Glasgow International, Glasgow, UK (2018); Tensta Konsthall, Spånga, Sweden (2017); Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge, UK (2017); Serpentine Galleries, London, UK (2016); Tate, London, UK (2016); and Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Ireland (2016). Her first major solo exhibition in a commercial gallery took place in 2022 at Gathering, London, UK.


Penny Slinger (b. 1947, United Kingdom; based in Los Angeles) is a groundbreaking artist whose fifty-year career has helped to shift the boundaries of feminist art through the exploration of the connection between eroticism, mysticism, feminism and art. Slinger mined surrealism in the 1960s and 1970s to plumb the depths of the feminine psyche and subconscious. Appropriating surrealism’s language and themes—woman's body as object, dream-state as entrance into the unconscious, and sexual and bodily desires—and applying them in analysis of surrealism itself and its culture, Slinger inserts herself into this art historical lineage and takes ownership of a visual lexicon that had previously objectified her. She continues to work in many mediums including collage, photography, drawing, sculpture and video. During her studies at the Chelsea College of Art in late 1960s London, Slinger became interested in the world of dreams and myths which deeply influenced her own practice, as seen in her first book 50% The Visible Woman (1971). Using photographic collage and poetry, Slinger’s lexicon of symbols examines how a woman is seen and how she sees herself—woman as goddess, woman as object of desire, and other lenses. During the 1970s, Slinger used her own staged photographs to create hauntingly surreal collages containing both male and female figures, including the artist herself. Her work from the 1960s-80s was featured in a solo exhibition at Blum & Poe, Los Angeles, CA in 2014. A documentary about her life, Penny Slinger: Out of the Shadows, was released in 2017 by filmmaker Richard Kovitch. In 2021, Slinger's now iconic artists’ book 50% The Visible Woman was re-released in celebration of the publication’s 50th anniversary. Recent institutional group exhibitions include ‘The Horror Show’, Somerset House, London, UK (2022); ‘Punk is Coming’, MoCA, Westport, CT (2022); ‘The Botanical Mind. Art, Mysticism and the Cosmic Tree’, Camden Arts Centre, London, UK (2020); ‘Tantra: Enlightenment to Revolution’, British Museum, London, UK (2020); ‘Cut and Paste – 400 Years of Collage’, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh, Scotland (2019); ‘Visible Women’, Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, Norwich, UK (2018); ‘Virginia Woolf: An Exhibition Inspired by Her Writings’, Tate St Ives, Cornwall, UK (2018); ‘The House of Fame’, convened by Linder, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK (2018); ‘The Beguiling Siren is Thy Crest’, The Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw, Poland (2017); ‘Women House’, Monnaie de Paris, Paris, France; traveled to National Museum in the Arts, Washington D.C. (2017); ‘History Is Now: 7 Artists Take on Britain’, Hayward Gallery, London, UK (2015); ‘Feminist Avant-garde of the 1970s from the Sammlung Verbund Collection’, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany (2015); ‘Lips Painted Red’, Trondheim Kunstmuseum, Trondheim, Norway (2013); ‘The Dark Monarch’, Tate St. Ives, St. Ives, UK (2009); and ‘Angels of Anarchy’, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester, UK (2009).


Kiki Smith (b. 1954, Germany, based in New York) is a German-born American sculptor, installation artist, and printmaker known since the 1980s for her multidisciplinary work that explores embodiment and the natural world, in particular, the philosophical, social and spiritual aspects of human nature. She uses a broad variety of materials to continuously expand and evolve a body of work that includes sculpture, printmaking, photography, drawing, and textiles. By manipulating everyday materials such as glass, ceramic, fabric and paper, Smith’s work examines the dichotomy between the psychological and physiological power of the body. As a young girl, one of Smith’s first experiences with art was helping her father – American sculptor Tony Smith – make cardboard models for his geometric sculptures. This training in formalist systems, combined with her upbringing in the Catholic Church, would later resurface in Smith’s evocative sculptures, drawings, and prints. The recurrent subject matter in Smith’s work has been the body as a receptacle for knowledge, belief, and storytelling. In the 1980s, Smith literally turned the figurative tradition in sculpture inside out, creating objects and drawings based on organs, cellular forms and the human nervous system. This body of work evolved to incorporate animals, domestic objects and narrative tropes from classical mythology and folk tales. Life, death and resurrection are thematic signposts in many of Smith’s installations and sculptures. The Kitchen in New York hosted Smith’s first solo exhibition in 1982. Since that time, Smith has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions worldwide, including over 25 museum exhibitions. Her work has been featured at five Venice Biennales, including the 2017 edition. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and in 2017 she became an Honorary Royal Academician at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. Previously, Smith was recognized in 2006 by TIME Magazine as one of the “TIME 100: The People Who Shape Our World.” Other awards include the Skowhegan Medal for Sculpture in 2000, the Edward MacDowell Medal in 2009, the Nelson A. Rockefeller Award in 2010, the U.S. Department of State Medal of Arts, conferred by Hillary Clinton, in 2013, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Sculpture Center in 2016. She is an adjunct professor at NYU and Columbia University.


Rae-Yen Song (b. 1993, Scotland, based in Glasgow) is a visual artist who works expansively across mediums, including drawing, sculpture, installation, costume, video, sound, performance, and family collaboration. Song’s work explores self-mythologising as a survival tactic: using fantasy and fabulation to establish a richly visual world-building practice informed by autobiography, ancestral journeys, Taoist philosophy, family ritual, multi-species interdependency, and science fiction. For Song, world-building becomes a tool for imaginative self-definition, with familial logics becoming the foundations of an alternative reality untethered from linear conceptions of space and time. It allows Song to resist colonial tropes and conventions, creating multidimensional narratives that speak broadly and politically about foreignness, identity, survival and what it means to belong ― or not. Solo exhibitions include: ‘▷▥◉▻’, Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee, Scotland (2021); and ‘✵may-may songuu✵', CFCCA, Manchester, UK (2020). Selected projects and exhibitions have been presented at FACT Liverpool, UK (2022); Talbot Rice Gallery, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland (2022); Freelands Foundation, London, UK (2022); LUX Scotland & BBC Scotland (2021); Hunterian Art Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland (2021); Glasgow International, Glasgow, Scotland (2021); Edinburgh Art Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland (2020); Jerwood Space, London, UK (2018); and JDA Perera Gallery, Colombo, Sri Lanka (2017). Recent residencies include: Launchpad LaB, France (2022); Talbot Rice Gallery, Scotland (2019-21); Hospitalfield, Scotland (2019); and Sura Madura, Sri Lanka (2017). Song is also the co-founder of Jarsdell Solutions Ltd.


Holly Stevenson (b. 1975, United Kingdom, based in London) is a sculptor who makes highly original hand built ceramic works informed by psychoanalysis and feminism. Her surreal ceramics spring from ovular forms inspired by Sigmund Freud’s favourite seductive egg-shaped jadeite ashtray that can still be found equipped with a phallic cigar on his desk at the eponymous museum in London. Her figurative work is concerned with a re-reading of the historical application of the feminine, examining androgyny and gender as well as pushing form to arrive at some tension between male and female where something else might be configured. Stevenson started to obsessively work with clay after a guest residency in Sichuan, China in 2016 after graduating from the Chelsea College of Art and Design MA in 2011 with the generous help of the Stanley Picker Foundation. Her graduate degree show featured in The Creative Cities Collection, Beijing and The Catlin Guide. She was awarded the MFI Flat Time House Graduate Award, supported by the John Latham Foundation and has held a Guest Fellowship at UAL in London. In 2020, Stevenson was selected for the Mother Art Prize 2020 and was given a new commission by Procreate Project funded by the Arts Council England. Recent solo exhibitions include: ‘AWITA X J W ANDERSON, Holly Stevenson by Sid Motion Gallery’, London, UK (2022); ‘Another Mother’ (public sculpture commission), The CoLAB, Temple, The Artist’s Garden, London, UK (2021); and ‘Reading between the Lines’, Sid Motion Gallery, London, UK (2021). Recent group exhibitions in 2022 include: ‘An Ode to Orlando’ (curated by Marcelle Joseph), Pi Artworks, London, UK; ‘Still Life/Life Still’, OHSH Projects, London, UK; ‘Georgia Szmerling X Holly Stevenson, Peer/Peer’, Art et al. Season One Cromwell Place, London, UK; ‘Body en Thrall’, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, Rugby, UK; ‘Smoke! Smoke! Smoke!’ (That Cigarette), Nadir Project Space, Brighton, UK; ‘Born from Earth’, Richard Saltoun Gallery, London, UK; and ‘A Space for Healing’, The Healing Collective, GIANT Gallery, Bournemouth, UK.