Art starts up again at Hunterian gallery after year in lockdown

Hunterian Art Gallery
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More of the city’s arts and cultural venues are coming back to life.

The latest is the Hunterian Art Gallery which partially reopens this Friday with a new exhibition.

Tobacco Flower’ is a major body of new work by Jimmy Robert, made especially for Glasgow International. 

The artist, who lives in Berlin, works in performance, film, photography, works on paper, and writing. 

The exhibition takes the tobacco flowers in Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s work to explore Glasgow’s colonial links.

A release to mark the opening states: “His work subtly explores the intersections between art history, representation and subjectivity. 

“Robert often reconsiders crucial moments from avant-garde art history, questioning their capacity to reflect the political complexities of lived experience, especially from a black, queer perspective.

“Figures as varied as Stanley Brouwn, Marguerite Duras, Hokusai, Georges Balanchine, Bas Jan Ader and Yoko Ono have served as points of departure in previous works.

“Notable among his recent performance works is Joie Noire (2019), part of a series reflecting on the legacy of Robert’s friend and frequent collaborator Ian White.

“Using a collage of textual and musical material, this two-person performance addressed the racial and sexual politics of the AIDS crisis and the aesthetics of art, music and dance in the 1980s.

“Taking tobacco flower textile designs by Charles Rennie Mackintosh as a key point of departure, Robert explores multiple traces left by Glasgow’s role within colonialism.”

Jimmy Robert, Creole Earring I, 2021. Inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist; Stitger Van Doesburg, Amsterdam; and Tanya Leighton, Berlin. Photography: Ruth Clark. Earring: Otilia Mihalcea.

It adds: “Working across several mediums, including film, photography and sound, Robert engages directly with The Hunterian and its historical collections in order to examine the cultural framing of identities and desires.” 

The Hunterian Gallery is on Hillhead Street within the campus of Glasgow University.

The exhibition is free but visitors need pre-booked timed tickets. See link below.

The Gallery’s website says: “As restrictions continue to ease, we are reopening our venues in phases and look forward to welcoming you back safely! 

‘Taking tobacco flower textile designs by Charles Rennie Mackintosh as a key point of departure, Robert explores multiple traces left by Glasgow’s role within colonialism

Hunterian Art Gallery

“Admission remains free and by pre-booked timed ticket

“From 11 June, the Hunterian Museum will open from 10am–5pm, Tue–Sat and 11am–4pm Sun (closed Mon).

“The Hunterian Art Gallery will partially reopen from 11 June with the new exhibition Jimmy Robert: Tobacco Flower in Gallery 2 and Edwin Morgan: An Eardley On My Wall in Gallery 1.”

Timorous Beasties, Topical Tropical, 2015. Digital print on paper. Copyright Timorous Beasties.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Textile Design: Pink Tobacco Flower, 1915-23. Pencil and watercolour on tracing paper. © The Hunterian, University of Glasgow.

  • Jimmy Robert: Tobacco Flower, 11 June–5 September 2021, Hunterian Art Gallery. Admission free and by pre-booked timed ticket.
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