Past exhibitions

Antonio Claudio Carvalho | 20-Apr-11 to 22-May-11

A dedicated season of artists' books curated by KALEID editions. Twelve internationally acclaimed artists engage with the Saison Poetry Library's collection in a diverse programme of exhibitions, interventions, residencies and participatory events.

Prompted by the Festival of Britain celebrations, contemporary artists are given a rare opportunity to draw upon Southbank Centre's archives and re-consider British identity sixty years on.

KALEID editions represents 'artists who do books', advocating public library collections and an interdisciplinary approach to artists' books. Visit the Saison Poetry Library on the fifth level of the Royal Festival Hall to discover the most comprehensive and accessible collection of poetry from 1912 in Britain.

Antonio Claudio Carvalho
20 April - 22 May 2011

ART ON POETRY, a season of artists' books, commences with Antonio Claudio Carvalho, an established painter working with concrete poetry since the seventies.

Concrete poetry can be traced back to Brazil, the artist's native country and features in key modernist movements. As an agency for both form and content, where text takes the shape of its meaning, Carvalho interposes the style's aesthetic and spacial quality of language throughout his practice.

Carvalho's paintings as homage to cultural icons, mould famous figures and the cult they create into naïve representations. He frequently references personal memories and despite its directness, his purpose is not simply celebratory, but a development of an intimate narrative of modern culture. Adieu Rimbaud painted forty-five years after leaving Paris is in retrospect a reconnection with Carvalho's youth and admiration for Arthur Rimbaud's poetry.

Bearing the same title as Lawrence Ferlinghetti's book in the City Lights Pocket Poets series, Pictures of the gone world is a large scale painting and an ode to the past; a Chinese worker salutes Allen Ginsberg's Howl, supplanting Mao's iconic Little Red Book. Taking on Chinese propaganda images of agricultural workers, the diptych echoes histories of political conflict and change as well as the impact of poetry and its omnipresence, with poets like Ginsberg being currently revisited in popular culture. The artist's book Let a hundred flowers blossom in Tiananmen Square resonates with similar notions. The poem, written in situ during the artist's first visit to China, imprints Carvalho?s own lyrical stance amongst icons of poetry such as Gregory Corso and Frank O'Hara. This is the first of twelve artists? books which responds to the Saison Poetry Library?s collection as part of Art on Poetry.

Antonio Claudio Carvalho is a self-taught artist, living and working in London. He was recently awarded the Talinn Triennial prize and exhibits in the UK, Brazil, Estonia and Belgium. His work can be found in the collections of the Saison Poetry Library, V&A Prints and Drawings, The Fine Arts Museum in Antwerp and the Beijing Biennale Foundation. Carvalho has also published poems and drawings with The Man Ray Dog Rocket Society, Transgravity Press and Vole press.

The exhibition at the Saison Poetry Library continues into the Southbank Centre's Members Room on Level 6 of the Royal Festival Hall.

Hellicar & Lewis
Interactive Installation
20 April - 29 May, 2011 
Peter Hellicar and Joel Gethin Lewis, a duo of installation artists, combine innovative open source software with a three dimensional interactive experience. Edwin Morgan's illuminated poems traverse across the library's bookshelves and congregate amongst a collection of poetry that reflects on nuclear proliferation, inhabiting the empty space between the reader and the library's archive.

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