|Opening||2019.06.06, 18:30, Thursday|
(1–2 Warner Yard London, London (England))
Hollybush Gardens is pleased to present a selection of drawings by Lubaina Himid that are being exhibited for the first time. This body of work was produced as part of the research process for what became Tailor, Striker, Singer, Dandy, a series of five painted portraits of black men that developed out of Himid’s encounter with the West African textiles held in the Manchester City Galleries’ extensive collection of historical fashion and clothing.
Himid, whose mother was a textile designer, has been fascinated by patterns in garments since childhood. Patterns have populated her work from the 1980s to today, enlivening the visual surface and weaving together disparate threads—cultural, geographical, historical. Himid explains, ‘I love the language of pattern, its immense potential for movement, illusion, colour experiments and subliminal political messaging.'
In developing the life-size portraits of Tailor, Striker, Singer, Dandy, Himid produced a body of drawings that interpret and re-contextualise the textiles she found in the collection. Colour, shape, and repetition are taken as devices embedded in clothing that are mobile and malleable, shifting in meaning across contexts. The drawings re-embed historical textile samples and clothing designs in the imagined male figures in anachronistic ways, animating the multi-directional and cross-historical flow of patterns in self-fashioning and identity.