Forma

Bring Me To Heal

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Golding often turns to his Anglo-Scottish and Ghanian ancestry by way of a Rastafarian upbringing as a point of departure to explore the drivers of human behaviour. Through film, photography and an increasingly labour-intensive process of sculpture, he creates dreamlike spaces, steeped in historical reference in which to locate characters experiencing moments of immutable change - points of no return that often leave the future hanging in the balance.

A centrepiece of the commission is an ornate hand knotted garment made of human hair that has been intricately designed by Golding in collaboration with the Shepperton Wig Company and hair artist Kevin Fortune using a pattern that blends references from afro hair styles to the body art of ancient Britons. Born from a lengthy process it is a symbol of healing and reflection; using the hair of potentially thousands of people, each strand was hand knotted and tended to by a group of producers for the purposes of collective healing.

Through the films and photography series the garment is brought to life when worn by Solomon Golding - Amartey’s brother and a dancer in his own right. We follow the character as he is nurtured into existence by a group of three nomadic Brothers in the English countryside or brought to a point of reckoning with our violent past within the opulence of the V&A museum, exposing a potent vulnerability. As the title suggests, the work searches for the point at which the tide of trauma can be steered towards a process of healing and away from further embedding itself in our collective psyche.

For this, Golding looks to the vital restorative work undertaken by Rastafarian and many other communities dealing with generational trauma and in a radical shift, applies these same techniques of context, accountability and compassion to the White British experience. Bring Me To Heal is a plea, an invocation for us to acknowledge the importance of understanding our emotional past and to establish a more equitable future. It is also a warning of the consequences we will continue to face if we don't.


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Bring Me To Heal

Amartey Golding
November 2021 – May 2022

Amartey Golding’s new large-scale commission combines filmmaking, photography and a handcrafted garment to highlight generational trauma in Britain and offer collective rituals of healing. The artist’s most ambitious work to date, the films will be shown as part of a major tour presented by Forma Arts & Media and the commissioning partners Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts in Brighton, Tramway and 198 Contemporary Arts & Learning.

Watch Trailer

Golding often turns to his Anglo-Scottish and Ghanian ancestry by way of a Rastafarian upbringing as a point of departure to explore the drivers of human behaviour. Through film, photography and an increasingly labour-intensive process of sculpture, he creates dreamlike spaces, steeped in historical reference in which to locate characters experiencing moments of immutable change - points of no return that often leave the future hanging in the balance.

A centrepiece of the commission is an ornate hand knotted garment made of human hair that has been intricately designed by Golding in collaboration with the Shepperton Wig Company and hair artist Kevin Fortune using a pattern that blends references from afro hair styles to the body art of ancient Britons. Born from a lengthy process it is a symbol of healing and reflection; using the hair of potentially thousands of people, each strand was hand knotted and tended to by a group of producers for the purposes of collective healing.

Through the films and photography series the garment is brought to life when worn by Solomon Golding - Amartey’s brother and a dancer in his own right. We follow the character as he is nurtured into existence by a group of three nomadic Brothers in the English countryside or brought to a point of reckoning with our violent past within the opulence of the V&A museum, exposing a potent vulnerability. As the title suggests, the work searches for the point at which the tide of trauma can be steered towards a process of healing and away from further embedding itself in our collective psyche.

For this, Golding looks to the vital restorative work undertaken by Rastafarian and many other communities dealing with generational trauma and in a radical shift, applies these same techniques of context, accountability and compassion to the White British experience. Bring Me To Heal is a plea, an invocation for us to acknowledge the importance of understanding our emotional past and to establish a more equitable future. It is also a warning of the consequences we will continue to face if we don't.

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Public Programme

Alongside his exhibition, Golding invited Gaylene Gould (The Space To Come) to organise a series of events, which will help us explore our feelings, emotional responses and understanding of generational trauma in Britain and the possibility of collective rituals of healing:

Bring Me To Heal – Events with Gaylene Gould

Artist Biography

Amartey Golding was born in London in 1988 to an Anglo-Scottish mother, Ghanaian father and Jamaican stepfather. His creative practice spans chainmail making, upholstery, film, photography, ballet and fashion. Golding’s work documents his introspective process of identifying and understanding the unifying primal themes of humanity and exploring the seemingly contradictory fabric of human existence. At Frieze London 2019, Theaster Gates selected Golding for the Prada Mode programme, screening all films in the Chainmail series accompanied by an in-conversation event between Amartey and his brother Solomon Golding.

Credits

Garment

Amartey Golding in collaboration with Hair Artist Kevin Fortune, The Shepperton Wig Company, Kirsty Oriel, Dee Sheehan, Richard Sweryda. With assistance from Lorraine Dublin, Chrissie Sterritt and Sophie Russell

Film 1 (Outdoor Film)

Crew

  • Artist & Director - Amartey Golding
  • DOP - Iain Ovenden | Easel Films
  • Producer - Rachel Cunningham Clark | Forma Arts & Media
  • Producer - Caroline Heron | Forma Arts & Media
  • Steadicam Op (A-Cam) - Matthew Clarke-Irons
  • Camera Assist (A-Cam) - David Manktelow
  • Focus Puller (A-Cam) - Barney Bachelor
  • Camera Op (B-Cam) - Drew Seymour
  • Camera Assist (B-Cam) - Luke Everson
  • Gaffer - Jono Moore
  • Lighting - Matt Ward
  • Sound Recordist - Dave Burn
  • Sound Assistant - Joe Harvey-Whyte
  • Production Assistant - Carolina Ongaro
  • Location - Misbourne Valley Locations
  • First Aider - Paul Schneider
  • Covid Superviser - Albert Sharpe
  • Fire Marshall - CineFireTech
  • Make-up & Hair Artist - Kevin Fortune
  • Editor - Joseph Carnaby
  • Grader - Studio RM
  • Sound Editor - Ben Hurd | Music and Sound Design Ltd

Cast

  • Being - Solomon Golding
  • Brother 1 - Darren Gayle
  • Brother 2 - Carl Mason
  • Brother 3 - Philip Walker


Film 2 (in the V&A)

Crew

  • Artist & Director - Amartey Golding
  • DOP - Iain Ovenden | Easel Films
  • Producer - Caroline Heron | Forma Arts & Media
  • 1st AD - Albert Sharpe
  • Steadicam Op - Tom Walden
  • Camera 2 Op - Drew Seymour
  • Focus Puller - Jerry Pradon
  • Camera Assist - Luke Everson
  • Lighting - Tom Bearne
  • Studio Manager - Lara Monro
  • Production Assistant - Carolina Ongaro | Forma Arts & Media
  • Hair Artist - Kevin Fortune
  • Assistant Stylist - Shannon Sheehan
  • Editor - Joseph Carnaby
  • Grader - Nevan Carey

Cast

  • Being - Solomon Golding
  • Goose - Darren Gayle

Music
Wu Stallion, ‘Don’t Test’. Written by Robert F. Diggs, Suga Bang Bang. Published by Wu Music Group

Touring Exhibition

‘The Making of Bring Me to Heal’

  • Produced and created by - Foreign Body Films
  • Production Assistant - Jennifer O’Neill | Forma Arts & Media

Touring Producer - Caroline Heron | Forma Arts & Media

Communications and Marketing Manager - Annika Thiems | Forma Arts & Media

Exhibition Design - Studio Ard – Chuard & Nørregaard

PR - Nicola Jeffs PR

Press

New Brighton exhibition explores generational trauma in UK, 23 November 2021 (The Argus)

Amartey Golding in conversation with Allison Ferns, 17 November 2021 (BBC Sussex)

Tuesday in Brighton, Amartey Golding in conversation with Melita Dennett, 23 November 2021 (Radio Reverb)

Amartey Golding in conversation with hair artist Kevin Fortune (Latest TV)

Amartey Golding, Bring Me to Heal (2021), video still. Image courtesy the artist.