This exhibition places side by side the little-known drawings of Roland Barthes, with new projection works by Victor Burgin. The influence of Barthes on Burgin’s work is well documented, not least by Burgin himself. Equally, Burgin’s prominence as an artist and theorist concerned with text and image during the 1970s onwards offers a challenging dialogue with Barthes’ work.
Roland Barthes’ writings continue to resonate with literary and arts scholarship today, yet the fact that Barthes sustained a practice of drawing and painting throughout the 1970s is little known. Only a handful of other public displays have occurred outside of France, but they have never been previously shown in the UK, despite sustained interest in his writings.
Since the 1960s, Victor Burgin has been one of the leading Conceptual artists and theorists from the UK working internationally. Often concerned with architecture, space, the built environment, memory and the means by which memory is physically and technologically constructed, Burgin’s recent digital projection installations can be considered as ‘photographs that move’. These works are not video as such, nor photography, but deliberate, painstaking digital constructions using current technologies.
This will be the final exhibition in the current space, marking the culmination of 35 years of exhibition making in its original location, before making the move to our new premises in Southampton’s city centre Arts Complex in October 2016.
Barthes/Burgin is a John Hansard Gallery exhibition, devised and curated in partnership with Professor Ryan Bishop and Dr Sunil Manghani, Winchester School of Art, with support from The Henry Moore Foundation.