Check outThe Art Newspaper’s guide to London Gallery Weekend 2022 for recommendations on the best exhibitions to see during the three-day event, top trends and commentary
A wide swathe of commercial galleries opening from Battersea to Bermondsey and down into Peckham and Deptford mean that the capital’s former no-go underbelly has become a major contemporary art hub, albeit one spread over a large area. South London spaces come in all forms—from gritty and industrial through to the intimate and domestic.
Cynthia Daignault: Xanadu
Until 4 June, The Sunday Painter, 117-119 South Lambeth Road, South Lambeth, SW8 1XA
Baltimore-based artist Cynthia Daignault makes serial ‘image streams’ of works sourced digitally but painted in oil on paper and organised around big topics such as whiteness, suburbia, war or the environmental crisis. These paintings are hung salon-style, with the multiple images on each gallery wall representing one work. They will be able to be viewed after the exhibition in a series of manuscript boxes where they can be flipped through like the pages of a book. The show’s title refers to ideas of utopia but also to the way idealism can both drive us and tear us apart.
Ada M. Patterson: to be rewritten on banana leaves
12 May-25 June, Copperfield, 6 Copperfield Street, Southwark, SE1 0EP
Ada Patterson works between Barbados, London and Rotterdam and for her first UK solo show is debuting The Whole World is Turning. This video piece was made in 2019 in the devastating wake of Hurricane Dorian and is a queer and personal retelling of the hurricanes which have always played a key part in the social fabric of life and death within the Caribbean. This is accompanied by Patterson’s Kanga for the Present, textile works which were also partly inspired by Dorian, and another allegorical film centred around an aloe farmer and the lessons to be learnt from dwindling water supplies in a fast-changing world.
Claire Baily: Terra Incognita
Until 11 June, Castor, Enclave 1, 50 Resolution Way, Deptford, SE8 4AL
New wall-based and free-standing works combine to create an installation of distinct geographies both accentuated and partitioned by suspended veils. These map a mysterious physical and psychological underworld of both earth and body, referring to the present restless state of the earth which, due to shifts in climate and ecologies, throws up long-buried artefacts from a distant past.
Frank Dot & Brian Oval
14 May-18 June, Sid Motion Gallery, Penarth Centre, 24a Hatcham Rd, South Bermondsey, SE15 1TR
Brian Griffiths and Frank Kent first met at the Royal Academy Schools where they both studied painting. Now the duo are collaborating on AIRSIGNS, an ongoing series of collaborative works which they describe as “sculptural works that are presented as photographs”. These are created using materials gleaned from the artists’ studios and daily lives which they then display and photograph framed within rudimentary cube shapes. Last year they made a special series of AIRSIGNS for Van Gogh’s former house in South London and now at Sid Motion we see them continuing their genre-blurring investigations.
Rafal Zajko: Song to the Siren
Until 27 May, Cooke Latham Gallery, 41 Parkgate Road, Battersea, SW11 4NP
A belief in the inherent queerness of science fiction as an arena of otherness lies at the core of this dramatic multi-sensory installation. Wall-hung works resemble a dysfunctional circuit board or control system, flashing with coloured lights and emitting steam and smoke, while six freestanding interactive vessel-like works in terracotta are activated by visitors’ heat and breath to discharge smoky vapour and shrill whistles.
Until 4 May, Corvi-Mora
Until 4 June, greengrassi
Both at 1a Kempsford Road (off Wincott Street), Kennington, SE11 4NU
These two important South London galleries, which are based in the same building, are making their London Gallery Weekend debut this year. At Corvi Mora new paintings and sculpture by Ethiopia-born, Milan-based painter Jem Perucchini explore the historical and metaphorical roles of chess in Eastern and Western philosophies. The inherent tension the game throws up between free will and the pre-ordained provides analogies with the role of painting to view and assess scenarios from different vantage points. Rome-born, Berlin-based painter and multimedia artist Catherine Biocca is also showing a series of new work at greengrassi.
The Art Newspaper is an official media partner of London Gallery Weekend