Goldsmiths Centre for Contemporary Art (Goldsmiths CCA) has today announced it will open to the public on 8 September 2018, with a solo exhibition by New York-based artist Mika Rottenberg.
Subsequent shows will include solo exhibitions of Kris Lemsalu, Alexis Hunter, and a presentation of work by the Chicago Imagists. The main exhibition programme will be accompanied by a series of special presentations.
Turner Prize winning architecture collective Assemble have designed Goldsmiths CCA. It is their first major building commission, and will be located on the campus of Goldsmiths, University of London, a university with a global reputation for excellence and innovation in the arts. Housing eight gallery spaces across just under 700m², the gallery will be in a redeveloped Grade II-listed building, previously the plant-works and watertanks for Laurie Grove Baths. The Oak Foundation Project Space, situated in the centre of the building, will host a diverse faster-paced programme, incorporating exhibitions, performances, collaborative projects and events that relate to the main exhibitions project and the university.
Goldsmiths CCA will also host talks, performances, films and other events related to its exhibition programme. It will be open to everyone and will also feature programming for young people and communities in the Lewisham area.
About the exhibitions – Read the full programme details
Mika Rottenberg (8 September – 4 November 2018) will present new and existing work in an exhibition that will run throughout seven galleries within Goldsmiths CCA. Featuring two new films, co-commissioned with Kunsthaus Bregenz and Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna (MAMbo), Rottenberg will respond to the building incorporating purpose-built installations alongside sculptural objects. Rottenberg is known for her ability to highlight themes such as the inequalities of our global economy and the fragility of the human body, spun through a lens of humour, absurdity and confusion. Two new works have been commissioned for the exhibition: Untitled (Ceiling Projection) and Study#4, which examine the human body’s physical and psychological potential and limitations. Rottenberg attempts to create a kind of psychological state, a spiritual state and a cosmic state, where energies transform things from one state of matter to another.
Estonian artist Kris Lemsalu (23 November 2018 – 3 February 2019) will showcase new work across the ground and first floor galleries of the main space. For Lemsalu’s first solo exhibition in London, the artist will present new work across the top floor of the gallery. Lemsalu’s sculptural installations are assembled from a palette of seemingly visceral materials including porcelain, animal parts and pelts, fur, wool, leather, fabric and shells, alongside bought and found objects. Often performing within her works by inhabiting sculptures as costumes, she plays with the line between human, creature and object. Through her specific style of humorous and absurd storytelling, Lemsalu poses earnest questions about the hierarchies we set up between life and death, beauty and revulsion, merit and mediocrity.
Coinciding with the Kris Lemsalu show will be a posthumous exhibition of work from the 1970s by Alexis Hunter, to be presented in the basement galleries. This will be the first solo presentation of Hunter’s work in the UK since 2006. Hunter is best known for her staged photographic works in which she used the medium as a tool to manipulate normative power dynamics within society through gender roleplay and fetishised objects. Her images draw upon the violence within capitalism’s abuse of gender stereotypes and sexuality for the pursuit of profit. This exhibition will show Hunter’s key works from the 1970s, bringing her acerbic critique into dialogue with the contemporary moment and reinforcing her importance as an artist and a feminist.
In March 2019, Goldsmiths CCA will present the first significant exhibition in the UK in almost 40 years of work by the Chicago Imagists. In the mid-1960s, Chicago saw an explosion of artistic activity centred around a small group of artists who would later become known as the Chicago Imagists. Their distinct and lively visual style would go on to influence some of the most important artists of the 20th Century. Co-curated with Rosie Cooper (De la Warr Pavilion, where the exhibition will travel in Summer 2019) and supported by Hayward Touring, this exhibition will focus on 15 vibrant and energetic artists including Christina Ramberg, Barbara Rossi, Jim Nutt, Gladys Nilsson and Karl Wirsum. It will feature painting, objects, drawings, prints and ephemera, highlighting their individual styles as well as their shared references and moments of connection.
The exhibition programme in the opening year has been made possible through the generosity of the Oak Foundation and The Bridget Riley Art Foundation.
The creation of Goldsmiths CCA has been made possible through many generous gifts from Goldsmiths’ alumni, friends and trusts and foundations. Goldsmiths extends its heartfelt thanks to its community of donors without whom this project would not have been possible.
Middle image: Kris Lemsalu, '3 of Life' (2017). Photo: Courtesy of the artist and Tatjana Pieters Gallery.
Lower image: Alexis Hunter, 'The Model’s Revenge I' (1974). Copyright the Estate of the Artist. Courtesy of Richard Saltoun Gallery.