In reality these things need to be said

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In reality, these things need to be said
7 August – 29 August 2021
Alfred House
Ashley Street
Nottingham, NG3 1JG

The exhibition platforms experiences and perspectives from emerging artists exploring themes of decolonising lost practices, African spirituality and magicism, systemic gaslighting, protest and celebration of Jamaican migrant roots.  

In reality these things need to be said
De’Anne Crooks ‘Great-is: The Gaslighting of a Nation’ (2020)

in reality, these things need to be said, is an exhibition featuring newly commissioned and existing works by five emerging artists; De’Anne Crooks, Arit Emmanuela Etukudo, Rene MatićZethu Maseko and Kim Thompson, based in the United Kingdom, South Africa and the United States. Curated by Jazz Swali and Saziso Phiri.

The exhibition considers themes of reclaiming stolen pasts through traditional tapestry and soundscape processes rooted in South Africa by Zethu Maseko. It explores the uncovering of embedded systemic gaslighting within the United Kingdom, taking form through mobile phone footage and spoken word by De’Anne Crooks. 

‘in reality’ also looks to present a response to the ‘forgotten’ St Ann’s riots of 1958; A precursor and catalyst for the Notting Hill race riots by Rene Matić. Unveiled through self-portraiture and film, the fear and disdain surrounding African spirituality within Black and African communities is projected and these notions are challenged on screen by Arit Emmanuela Etukudo. Large-scale portraits celebrate a Jamaican migrant matriarch through fashion, family, and their community in Nottingham by Kim Thompson. 

BACKLIT Gallery has collaborated with New Art Exchange for a cross-over event and the exhibition has been supported by Arts Council England, and The Big House.

Jazz Swali, Curator, says of the exhibition:

“This exhibition started as a conversation about the type of work that we wanted to see more of within the region. We wanted to work with emerging artists who are making art that we as curators are excited about, using their practices to highlight their realities and those of the communities in which they are part. This show will support regional, national, and international practitioners through new commissions, and the presentation of an existing work that will be showcased within a physical gallery for the first time. This project has allowed space for the artists to develop new work and be part of a residency at BACKLIT Gallery. We are excited for audiences to engage further with this show and connect with local creatives and collectives across the city, coming together for a programme of free events which includes a panel discussion, workshops, and a Response Show.”

In addition, there will be public programme:

Private View and Reading by Rose Thompson in connection with Kim Thompson’s work

Friday 6 August open from 5.30 to 9pm

Artist panel discussion

Saturday 14 August from 2-4pm at BACKLIT, booking required

With Chloe Austin, Rene Matić, De’Anne Crooks and Zethu Maseko.

The Vessel Body Part 2, NAE Cross-Over Wednesday 25 August, 6.30-8pm

With Arit Emmanuela Etukudo, online public talk, live streamed from New Art Exchange

Dates: “in reality, these things need to be said” will run from 7 August – 29 August 2021

Private Viewing: The show will officially open with a Private Viewing at BACKLIT Gallery on Friday 6 August 5.30pm – 9.00pm and we would be delighted for press and friends to attend.

Venue: BACKLIT Gallery, Nottingham

Opening hours: Wednesday & Thursday by appointment only (contact the gallery to book a slot). The show is open Friday, Saturday & Sunday 12pm – 5pm (no booking required).

©2021 BACKLIT Gallery, De’Anne Crooks, Arit Emmanuela Etukudo, Rene Matić, Zethu Maseko, Kim Thompson

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