JHG Sampler

Hetain Patel, The Jump (2015), 2 channel video installation, HD with sound. Commissioned by Wood Street Galleries, Pittsburgh, USA. Courtesy the artist

Please join us as John Hansard Gallery celebrates moving into our new home in Studio 144, Guildhall Square with JHG Sampler, a flavour of what is to come when the Gallery formally reopens later this year.

JHG Sampler is a week-long mix of art, music, film, performance and words with something for everyone, including a wide range of emerging and established artists, organisations and partners from across Southampton and the region:

David Batchelor’s P-A-R-A-D-E, a spectrum of coloured banners on lamp posts, has been brightening up Above Bar Street since August last year. For JHG Sampler the original drawings from P-A-R-A-D-E will be presented inside the new Gallery, alongside new drawings evolved from the same family of forms.

Rhona Byrne’s Huddlehood that featured in ‘Summer in the Square’ last August, will also be on view inside the new Gallery. Huddlehood is a geometric container that houses yellow social clothing, hoodies and baseball caps for groups of two or more people. It was originally created for the Facebook HQ in Dublin.

Rob Crosse’s film installation Prime Time follows a group of older gay men, who are members of a social network called ‘prime timers’, as they journey on a cruise ship around the Caribbean. The film is an affectionate study of human hopes and desires, and how we both measure and deny the passing of time.

Department for Doing Nothing (DfDN) is a drop-in project with John Hansard Gallery’s Head of Education, Dr Ronda Gowland-Pryde, that was developed for Tate Exchange in 2017. DfDN was created by the young people taking part and playfully explores issues of youth crime from the perspective of young people, teachers, youth offending service workers and artists.

Sam Laughlin, recipient of the 2017 Jerwood Photography Award, was commissioned by JHG to photograph the construction process of Studio 144. For JHG Sampler, Sam presents his architectural black and white photographs of the building in the very spaces and corners that they record.

Experimental vocalist and movement artist Elaine Mitchener will perform SWEET TOOTH, an exploration of our love for sugar and its historical links with the transatlantic slave trade. SWEET TOOTH will take place at NST City, Nuffield Southampton Theatres’ new Guildhall Square venue on Friday 23 February, at 7.45pm, followed by a panel discussion on Saturday 24 February at 11am with Elaine Mitchener, Dr Christer Petley, University of Southampton historian and Don Jon, founder of Southampton Black History Month.

JHG Sampler includes three projects by Hetain Patel. Don’t Look at the Finger is a video that follows a man and a woman as they communicate through complex choreography combining Kung Fu and sign language. ‘The Jump’ is a video installation showing two different viewpoints of Hetain wearing a homemade Spider-Man costume and leaping in super-slow motion across the screen. Fiesta Transformer is a sculpture that transforms a replica of Hetain’s first car, a 1988 Ford Fiesta, into a large-scale squatting humanoid figure.

Artist-collective Stair/Slide/Space have created a ‘Conversation Station’ for JHG Sampler. Visitors to the Gallery will be invited to build a shelter and enter into conversation about “what you would like your Gallery to be”. These conversations will be recorded as a public consultation and used to inform John Hansard Gallery’s future programme.

In addition to these works of art and installations JHG Sampler will also feature events, workshops and performances, including ‘Entropics’ with performances by sound poet Holly Pester and John Hansard Gallery Writer-in-Residence Iain Morrison, a ‘Future Cities Southampton’ Communities Hub and a ‘Writers-in-Conversation’ event.

Alongside JHG Samper our neighbour in Studio 144, City Eye, who exist to inspire and promote film and digital culture in the region, will host screenings and showcase outcomes from their recent half-term film school.

JHG Sampler is part of Southampton Celebrates, the moment John Hansard Gallery, City Eye and Nuffield Southampton Theatres come together to celebrate moving into Studio 144, Southampton’s new arts complex. Studio 144 is the final piece of Southampton’s Cultural Quarter and is expected to attract 350,000 people to the city centre each year. Friday 16 February will be the joint launch of both buildings, with a large-scale outdoor dance commission choreographed by Zoielogic Dance Theatre with local communities and groups, culminating in fireworks just before 7pm that announce the arrival of John Hansard Gallery, City Eye and Nuffield Southampton Theatres in Studio 144.

JHG Sampler will continue from 17 to 24 February with daily events, screenings and workshops (except Sunday 18). After JHG Sampler, John Hansard Gallery will formally reopen on 12 May 2018 with a retrospective by renowned German painter Gerhard Richter in association with ARTIST ROOMS.

The long-awaited move, from the Gallery’s historic home at the University of Southampton’s Highfield Campus to the new purpose-built Studio 144 in Southampton’s Cultural Quarter, triples the space available for public programme, community-focussed projects and active learning opportunities. The city-centre Gallery will dramatically increase opportunities for the public to experience and be inspired by great art, as well as creative collaboration with its new cultural neighbours in Studio 144 – City Eye and Nuffield Southampton Theatres – and public engagement with researchers at University of Southampton.

Rhona Byrne, Huddlehood, installation image, 2018. Courtesy the artist. Photo: Steve Shrimpton
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