RESET, Alberta Whittle, Frieze Artist Award 2020
Forma Arts and Media, London
9 - 16 October, 12 - 5pm
Commissioned & produced by Forma & Frieze
Opening 9 October 2020 at Forma’s new cultural hub in South London, this will be the first public screening of RESET, a new film by Alberta Whittle who is this year's recipient of the annual Frieze Artist Award, a major commission granted to an emerging artist at Frieze London. The new moving-image work is informed by the writings of queer theorist, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, interweaving gothic imagery, fears of contagion, xenophobia and the ensuing moral panic that often follows such anxieties. Exploring timely questions relating to personal healing and the cultivation of hope in hostile environments such as the ensuing global pandemic or colonialism, this urgent political film strikes the balance between grief and reflection, empathy and desire.
Living and working between Scotland and Barbados, Whittle’s interdisciplinary works frequently explore the African diaspora and push for the decolonisation of Western history. Often working with multiple collaborators from composers, choreographers, writers and animators, Whittle creates a working practice that is supportive and humanising. Motivated by the desire to manifest self-compassion and collective care as key methods in battling anti-blackness, Whittle choreographs interactive installations, using film, sculpture and performance as site-specific artworks in public and private spaces.
Eva Langret, Artistic Director, Frieze London said: “Frieze is thrilled to present a major new commission by Alberta Whittle. Whittle’s winning proposal is a moving-image work that explores timely questions relating to personal healing and the cultivation of hope in hostile environments; be it the pandemic, colonialism or xenophobia. We are delighted to be partnering with Forma, for the second year, and thank them for their support in realising this significant new commission.”
Chris Rawcliffe, Artistic Director, Forma said: I’m incredibly proud to continue the collaboration between Frieze and Forma on the 2020 Frieze Artist Award. This year’s selected artist, Alberta Whittle, has shown incredible generosity in her creative process, inviting multiple collaborators to work on her commission. In her films, Whittle balances urgent political and social issues with poetic narratives that transcend time and resonate with us all. In these more than challenging times, Whittle’s voice speaks louder and clearer than most.
Supported by Forma for the second year running, the Frieze Artist Award presents a major opportunity for an emerging international artist to debut an ambitious new commission for Frieze London. Focused on the medium of film for the last two years, the Artist Award is a central feature of Frieze London’s anchor programme of collaborations and talks, which takes place alongside the Frieze London gallery sections. The 2020 edition of the Frieze Artist Award was selected by a jury composed of leading industry figures, including Eva Langret (Artistic Director, Frieze London), Chris Rawcliffe (Artistic Director, Forma), Himali Singh Soin (Artist and winner of the Frieze Artist Award 2019), Victor Wang (王宗孚) (Artistic Director and Chief Curator, M WOODS Museum) and Zoé Whitley (Director, Chisenhale Gallery). Whittle’s winning proposal was selected from a shortlist of nominated artists including Cibelle Cavalli Bastos, Jamie Crewe, Adham Faramawy, Arash Fayez, Onyeka Igwe, Helene Kazan and Sadé Mica.
This year Frieze will introduce an innovative hybrid of online and offline activity, reaching audiences worldwide via the digital reach of Frieze Viewing Room, as well as the week-long screening at Forma’s new cultural hub in South London. Frieze London is supported by global lead partner Deutsche Bank, continuing a shared commitment to artistic excellence.
Alberta Whittle was born in Bridgetown, Barbados in 1980 and lives and works in Glasgow, Scotland. She is an artist, researcher and curator, and is a Research Associate at The University of Johannesburg. She was a RAW Academie Fellow at RAW Material in Dakar in 2018 and is the Margaret Tait Award winner for 2018-19. Her recent solo and group shows include, the Directors Programme at Glasgow International, Glasgow (2020); Grand Union, Birmingham (2020); Eastside Projects, Birmingham (2020); Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee (2019); GoMA, Glasgow (2019); Pig Rock Bothy, National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh (2019); 13th Havana Biennale, Cuba (2019); Tyburn Gallery, London (2019); The City Arts Centre, Edinburgh (2019); The Showroom, London (2018); National Art Gallery of the Bahamas, Nassau (2018); RAW Material, Dakar (2018); FADA Gallery, Johannesburg (2018); the Apartheid Museum, Johannesburg (2017); FRAMER FRAMED, Amsterdam (2015); Goethe On Main, Johannesburg (2015); Johannesburg Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale, Venice (2015); and BOZAR, Brussels (2014), among others. Her work is part of The Scottish National Gallery Collections, Glasgow Museums Collections and The Contemporary Art Research Collection at Edinburgh College of Art. Whittle’s writing has been published in MAP magazine, Visual Culture in Britain, Visual Studies, Art South Africa and Critical Arts Academic Journal. In 2022, Whittle will take part in Olympics of the art world, the 59th Venice Biennale.
In 2021, new commissions and group presentations include Art Night London; British Art Show 9; Liverpool Biennial; business as usual: hostile environment at Glasgow Sculpture Studios; and Right of Admission, University of Johannesburg.
For further information or images please contact: Leila Hasham on firstname.lastname@example.org
About the event: https://forma.org.uk/projects/...
Friday, 9 October - Friday, 16 October, 12 - 5pm
Screenings will be on the hour from 12noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm & 5pm.
Advance registration is essential as there will be limited capacity for each screening. Please book your free ticket in advance here:
Unit A - G
Forma is centrally located between zones 1-2. Elephant & Castle, Borough and London Bridge Underground stations are 10-15 minutes’ walk and there are numerous bus connections within a few minutes from the building. https://goo.gl/maps/xN3YDAttrV...
To ensure the safe flow of visitors all tickets must be purchased in advance via Eventbrite. Only those with pre-booked tickets will be permitted entry so please do get in touch prior to your visit.
Safety measures in place will include social distancing, limited visitor capacity, one-way routes through the building, sanitisation points and regular cleaning.
Face masks are mandatory when onsite. Unless you are medically exempt from wearing a nose and mouth covering you will be required to wear one, scarves will not be accepted. If you have forgotten your face mask, masks will be available at the gallery on a donation basis.
Forma Arts and Media is a London-based visual arts commissioning and production agency that works with emerging and mid-career British and international artists. It looks to support projects that span multiple disciplines, challenge existing practices and pushes for new levels of ambition. With a distinct emphasis on collaboration, creative inquiry and production values, Forma works closely with artists and partners to develop interdisciplinary, site-specific and large-scale projects for audiences worldwide, from community workshops to institutional exhibitions and film. In late 2020, Forma will officially launch its new cultural hub in Southwark.
Frieze is the world’s leading platform for modern and contemporary art, comprising three magazines – frieze, Frieze Masters Magazine and Frieze Week – and four international art fairs – Frieze London, Frieze Masters, Frieze New York and Frieze Los Angeles.
Frieze was founded in 1991 by Matthew Slotover and Amanda Sharp, with the launch of frieze magazine. In 2003, Sharp and Slotover launched Frieze Art Fair, which takes place each October in The Regent’s Park, London. In 2012 both Frieze New York and Frieze Masters were launched, this was followed in 2019 by the first edition of Frieze Los Angeles. In 2016 Frieze entered into a strategic partnership with Endeavor, a global entertainment, sports and content company.
Image: Matthew A Williams