While 1-54 London will be held at Somerset House from 13-16 October 2022, wander through the city and go visit wonderful contemporary art exhibitions!

Ufuoma Essi: Is My Living in Vain at Gasworks

Ufuoma Essi, Bodies in Dissent, 2021. Film still. Super 8mm film. Commissioned by Satellite. Courtesy of the artist.

Gasworks presents a major new film commission by London-based filmmaker and artist Ufuoma Essi. Informed by Black feminist epistemology, her films and moving image works examine history as an embodied experience.

Essi makes abundant use of archival footage intercut with heterogeneous materials including homemade VHS tapes, YouTube clips and analogue 16mm footage shot on location. It is through an embodied exploration of archives that her work aims to disrupt the silences and gaps in the dominant visual narratives.

Is My Living in Vain is a meditation on the continuing history and emancipatory potential of the Black church as a space of diasporic belonging, affirmation and community organising. Weaving together archival imagery, oral histories and shot footage, Essi’s film follows a tangled thread of personal and collective memories in order to interrogate the church’s contribution to a Black radical tradition.

From 6 October – 18 December 2022

155 Vauxhall Street
London SE11 5RH

Roxane Mbanga: NOIRES at San Mei Gallery

Roxane Mbanga, view of the living room, 2022. Photo by Simon Pillaud.

San Mei Gallery presents the first solo exhibition in London by French-Guadeloupe-Cameroonian artist Roxane Mbanga. Positioning herself as a storyteller, Mbanga works across fashion, film, graphic design, photography, writing and performance. Her work explores the position of black women in public space under conditions of both hypervisibilisation and invisibilisation, providing space for public conversations around Afro-diasporic identity.

From 16 September – 15 October 2022

39A Loughborough Road
London SW9 7TB

Romuald Hazoumè: Carnaval at October Gallery

Romuald Hazoumè, Aquarus, 2018. Found objects, 38 x 38 x 14 cm. Courtesy of October Gallery and the artist.

Romuald Hazoumè’s 5th solo exhibition in London, Carnaval, opens on 6th October.

In this exhibition of new and much-anticipated work, Hazoumè returns to his signature masques bidons (repurposed masks), in which the artist keenly observes international concerns and the figures that populate the world’s political stage. In this new series of ‘masks’ composed of miscellaneous found materials, Hazoumè’s keen eye for detail coupled with his droll sense of humour percolate through to reinvigorate the form again, expanding its range to encompass new interpretive possibilities.

From 6 October – 26 November 2022

Gallery Talk: Romuald Hazoumè in Conversation with Gerard Houghton

Join globally renowned artist, Romuald Hazoumè, in conversation with Gerard Houghton, Director of Special Projects at October Gallery, on the occasion of his solo show in London, Carnaval. This artist’s talk will offer direct insights from the artist himself as he unpacks the charged concepts presented in these new works and discusses his distinctive creative process.

Saturday, 15th October, 2022
3 pm – 4.30 pm Entry: £5

Book your ticket here

October Gallery, 24 Old Gloucester Street,
London WC1N 3AL

Harold Offeh: We Came Here at Van Gogh House

Harold Offeh outside Van Gogh House, 2022

We Came Here manifests as a conversation across a century; between 20-year old Vincent Van Gogh who in 1873 had just arrived in Stockwell; and 20-year old Olive Morris, a Jamaican-born, Brixton-based community leader, who in 1972 was campaigning for feminist, black and squatters’ rights. The imagined dialogue between artist and activist will explore their shared and divergent experiences of London, social justice and the development of personal and socio-political consciousness. In other audio testimonies drawn from historic archives, more young migrants to Brixton and Lambeth will tell their stories.

8 September – 18 December 2022

Van Gogh House London
87 Hackford Road
London SW9 0RE

Hew Locke: The Procession at Tate Britain

Photograph: Guy Bell/Shutterstock

A procession is part and parcel of the cycle of life; people gather and move together to celebrate, worship, protest, mourn, escape or even to better themselves. This is the heart of Hew Locke’s ambitious new project, The Procession.

The Procession invites visitors to ‘reflect on the cycles of history, and the ebb and flow of cultures, people and finance and power.’ Tate Britain’s founder was art lover and sugar refining magnate Henry Tate. In the installation Locke says he ‘makes links with the historical after-effects of the sugar business, almost drawing out of the walls of the building,’ also revisiting his artistic journey so far, including for example work with statues, share certificates, cardboard, rising sea levels, Carnival and the military.

22 March 2022 – 22 January 2023

Tate Britain, Millbank
London SW1P 4RG

Cara Nahaul: Swimming Lessons at Taymour Grahne Projects

Cara Nahaul: Swimming Lessons. Installation shot at Taymour Grahne Projects.

Taymour Grahne Projects is pleased to present Swimming Lessons, a solo exhibition by London-based artist Cara Nahaul.

In the book that accompanies this exhibition, Cara Nahaul writes: “My childhood is flooded with memories of the sea … a body of water that sits between Malaysia and Mauritius—the islands of my parents.” Since her earliest explorations as an artist, the Indian Ocean has been vital to Nahaul, forming an integral framework for her vivid paintings of white-hued houses and lavish greenery—crisp compositions constructed from minimal components—as well as her hazier pencil-and-pastel drawings of the same verdant landscape. Memory functions in tandem: the recollections cited by the artist relate to trips she took as a young child to her grandparents’ house in Mauritius.

10 September – 22 October 2022

Ibrahim El-Salahi: Pain Relief at Vigo Gallery

Ibrahim El-Salahi, Pain Relief, 2019. Courtesy of Vigo Gallery and the artist.

When 91-year-old Ibrahim El-Salahi is drawing he gets lost in work and has temporary respite from his sciatica and chronic back pain. The ‘Godfather of African Modernism’ says it’s the only time he really has relief from the pain.

Between 2016-2018 Sudanese Oxford-based artist created an extraordinary body of work from the comfort of an armchair, refusing to let physical restriction limit his ambition. During this period, he has made around 200 tiny, but incredible drawings in pen and ink created on the inside cardboard of his medicine packets and on the backs of envelopes after consuming their contents.

These were drawings in their own right, but they were also seeds for a very ambitious project. El-Salahi wanted to make larger scale work despite his physical constraints and achieved this by using these drawings as a nucleus from which to create large, unique mono-print paintings transferred by screen from the drawings. The original image is pressed through the gauze onto strong woven linen canvas many times over until a thick inky texture is achieved, amplifying the character of the marks. Limited by his physical constraint this method has allowed El-Salahi to do something that otherwise would not have been possible. It is a selection of the first mono-print paintings which will be displayed in this exhibition at Wellington Arch. This body of work, made despite and because of circumstance, gives us the opportunity to delve into the mind of El-Salahi and experience his memories of a long and fruitful life.

23 June – 30 October 2022

Vigo Gallery, Wellington Arch
Apsley Way, London W1J 7JZ

Pedro Pires: Habitat for the Sculpture In The City project 

Pedro Pires’ sculpture Habitat for the Sculpture In The City project. Courtesy of Sculpture In The City.

Habitat is a word that describes an ecological system that is in balance – where an animal, plant or other organism inhabits. It was important for the artist to choose a title that could guide the viewer to look at the sculpture in an ecological, environmental and sustainable context.

The artist seeks to address the ecological imbalance that exists in our ERA, which began with the industrial revolution, that has been becoming more complex in the last century and which continues to worsen in the beginning of the 21st century. The decline of this balance is ongoing and, in the future, could have a final impact on our species and the planet itself.

Until May 2023

Mitre Square,
London, EC3A 5DH

Zanele Muholi part of the Known and Strange: Photographs from the Collection at the V&A Museum

(detail) Bakhambile Skhosana, Natalspruit, gelatin silver print from the series Faces and Phases, by Zanele Muholi, 2007 – 10. Museum no. E.429-2011. © Zanele Muholi

A photograph has the power to transform the familiar into the unfamiliar,  and to make the ordinary extraordinary.  Since its invention, photography has changed the way we see the world by inviting us to interpret reality in our own way.  Its creative capacity to blur fact with fiction is the focus of ‘Known and Strange: Photographs from the Collection’ .

The display showcases over 50 recent contemporary acquisitions for the V&A’s permanent collection, created by internationally well-known names and emerging talents.

Until 27 November 2022

V&A Photography Centre, The Sir Elton John and David Furnish Gallery, Room 101
Cromwell Road
London SW7 2RL

Rene Matić: upon this rock at South London Gallery

Rene Matić, Jesus Is, Peckham, 2021

upon this rock is a solo exhibition by British artist Rene Matić. It will continue their long-term interrogation of ‘Britishness’, exploring how the nation’s past manifests in its present. The exhibition will also address themes of subculture, faith and family.

A new installation of bronze and wood sculptures focuses on the figure of ‘the crucified skinhead’ – a long-standing symbol used to convey a sense of persecution and alienation. Matić’s work frequently makes reference to the Skinhead movement, which originally emerged in the mid-1960s as a cultural exchange between Caribbean and white working-class communities. The exhibition will place subculture and spirituality in dialogue, positioning subculture as religion – as saviour or guide.

23 September – 27 November 2022

South London Gallery, 65-67 Peckham Rd,
London, SE5 8UH

Fracisco Vidal: Still Free at THIS IS NOT A WHITE CUBE booth S15 in 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair

Francisco Vidal. Courtesy of the artist.

“I started developing the performance and series Still Free when the lockdown ended. We all left our homes – a gesture shared by all who inhabit the planet in 2022. In this contemporary pandemic, societies performed an exercise familiar to painters for a long time. That of existing within the “creative bubble” of the studio. In 2020 and 2021, I did a lot of drawings and paintings related to “isolation & social media” and “collective hysteria”, themes much more specific than the most common ones in my paintings. When I realised that these subjects dealt with the individual bubble space versus an active social space, I decided to do an exercise sitting at the opposite end of the individual experience and isolation.”

14 October 2022 | 4 pm – 7 pm

1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair,
Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 1LA

Village Letters Prafulla Mohanti Exhibition – Iniva

“Kalika” by Prafulla Mohanti

Opening 27 September 2022, iniva is proud to present Prafulla Mohanti’s first solo exhibition in London since 2008.  

Following Prafulla Mohanti’s exhibition Full Circle, curated by Future Collect Curatorial Trainee Amber Li at The Hepworth Wakefield, iniva is delighted to support the work of Prafulla Mohanti with a new solo exhibition titled Village Letters, opening at the Stuart Hall Library. 

27 September 2022 – 20 January 2023

Stuart Hall Library, 16 John Islip Street, SW1P 4JU