Whitechapel Gallery, Sharjah Art Foundation organise Gavin Jantjes’ ‘To Be Free!’ exhibition in London

LONDON: This June, Whitechapel Gallery and Sharjah Art Foundation, in collaboration with The Africa Institute, present a major exhibition of Gavin Jantjes. Curated by Salah M. Hassan, alongside Gilane Tawadros and Cameron Foote, ‘To Be Free! A Retrospective 1970-2023′ will take place from 12th June to 1st September 2024 at Whitechapel in London. The exhibition builds on the South African artist and activist’s major solo exhibition organised by and presented at Sharjah Art Foundation from November 2023 to March 2024.

This timely retrospective is the artist’s largest solo presentation in the UK to date, bringing together more than 100 prints, drawings, and paintings, many of which have never been shown in the UK before. The exhibition traces five decades of Jantjes’ trajectory as a painter, printmaker, writer and curator, while foregrounding his critical role in furthering the discourses around, and representations of, Africa and its diasporas.

‘To be Free!’ explores the impact this moment went on to have on
his life and work, not least by his exile to Europe. Works on show span Jantjes’ extraordinary career, encompassing his ground-breaking print works, his compelling, figurative and metaphorical portrayals of the global Black struggle for freedom, through to his recent transition to non-figurative painting.

A 45-minute documentary, To Be Free, by Paul Jantjes, produced by Studio 3 Oslo in Norway, will also be screened during the exhibition period.

This exhibition is curated by Salah M. Hassan, Chancellor of Global Studies University, Dean of The Africa Institute, Sharjah, UAE, and Distinguished Professor at Cornell University. The presentation at Whitechapel Gallery is curated in collaboration with Gilane Tawadros, Whitechapel Gallery Director, and Cameron Foote, Whitechapel Gallery Curator.

Source: Emirates News Agency