An exhibition curated by Pablo León de la Barra with Carmen Juliá. With Diego Barboza, Ulises Carrión, Felipe Ehrenberg, David Lamelas, Leopoldo Maler, Hélio Oiticica, Pablo & Delia, Cecilia Vicuña and additional works by Artists for Democracy, Signals Newsbulletin, Ray Barrie, John Dugger, and Clay Perry.
Download exhibition leaflet here.
Pablo León de la Barra is the sixth guest curator invited by DRAF to be part of the Curators’ Series. ‘Friends of London’ will explore the vibrant and specific context of the Latin American art scene in London in the 60s and 70s. The title of the exhibition is based on a work by Argentinean artist David Lamelas, ‘London Friends’ 1974. Lamelas invited a number of friends to be photographed, thereby creating a remarkable image of the London scene at the time. The pictures were taken by a photographer who worked primarily in fashion and, as a result, the subjects took on glamorous poses. The images are at once fashion photography and personal portraits. They include pictures of the artist Marcel Broodthaers and his wife, London gallery owner Nigel Greenwood, curator and writer Lynda Morris (who played the leading character in Lamelas’s seminal work ‘Film Script (Manipulation of Meaning)’ in 1972), and Kamala Di Tella from the Di Tella family, who initiated the Center for Visual Arts of the Instituto Di Tella in Buenos Aires, the foremost avant-garde cultural institution in Latin America during the 1960s.
‘Friends of London’ at DRAF takes its lead from this work and offers the opportunity to engage with a particular social and artistic scene established in London throughout the 60s and 70s. This exhibition focuses on London as an instrumental destination for artists from Latin America, whose work has previously been examined in the context of their native countries, or in relation to contemporaneous North American works. Through the display of artworks, letters, documents, interviews and publishing projects, the exhibition aims to contextualise the incredibly fertile and symbiotic relationship established between these artists, some political exiles, and their new London environment.
Leaving to one side ideas of nationality and regionalism, this exhibition focuses on London as a place of freedom and experimentation that enabled artists to produce radical works that engaged with issues of participation and collaboration, established new relationships with the public space and fostered art as an effective political tool.
- David Lamelas in Conversation with Lynda Morris (22 June 2013)
David Lamelas will discuss his series London Friends, 1974, with curator Lynda Morris and Pablo Leon de la Barra, curator of Friends of London. Artists from Latin America in London from 196X -197X. They will discuss the course of Lamelas’ work in London during the 70s and the contemporaneous context of his practice.
David Lamelas (b. 1946 in Buenos Aires was a key figure in the emergence of an international conceptual art in the late 1960s. Originally a sculptor, he became a pioneering film artist. Lamelas has lived and made work across Europe and America. His work has been exhibited in Europe, America and Asia including at Centre Pompidou, Paris; MACBA, Barcelona; Kunsthalle, Berlin; PS1 Contemporary Art centre, New York; Tate Modern, London; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York and MOCA, Los Angeles.
Lynda Morris worked for Nigel Greenwood Inc Ltd from 1971 to 1974 who published David Lamelas Publication 1970. Morris established his bookshop and curated The Book as Artwork 1960-72 for Germano Celant. Lamelas’ Filmscript starred Morris at the time and was set in the Gallery. She was also one of the London Friends. Lamelas arranged for her to be the London correspondent of Art Press in Paris. They have remained friend over the years and Morris wrote about David in the Witte de With and the Vienna Secession catalogues. Morris devised and curated EASTinternational in Norwich 1991 to 2009. She currently has two touring exhibitions Dear Lynda… originated by Matthew Higgs at White Columns in New York and due to open at BQ in Berlin in July and Documenting Cadere 1972-78 originated by MAO and now showing at Artists Space New York.
- Friends of London exhibition tour with David Medalla (6 July 2013)
David Medalla will give a tour of the exhibition and discuss his memories of Latin American artists in London and Paris in the 1960s and 1970s.
David Medalla (b. 1942 in Manila) is a pioneering figure in the areas of kinetic, participatory and live art. His practice is diverse, including sculpture, installations, paintings, drawings, impromptu events and performances. Medalla has been based in Britain on and off since the 1960s, when he co-founded the influential Signals gallery in London and edited the Signals newsbulletin. His work has been exhibited in galleries and museums worldwide, including Tate Modern, the Whitechapel, the ICA and the Hayward galleries in London, as well as in Japan, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Mexico and the Philippines. Medalla has also lectured widely at universities, art schools and institutions, including a series of lectures on global culture at MOMA, New York.
This exhibition is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England .
Sponsored by Corona Beer.
Supported by the Mexican Embassy, London
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