Turner Contemporary

Phyllida Barlow, untitled: brokenshelf2015, 2015, Timber, plywood, steel, fabric, PVA, cement, tape, plaster. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth

A Reading List for Entangled: Threads & Making

Entangled: Threads & Making is on show at Turner Contemporary from 28 January 2017 to 7 May 2017. The exhibition brings together over 40 international, women artists from several generations who explore a diverse range of materials and techniques.

Each artist has a story to tell and an extensive body of work to explore. This reading list with books suggested by curator, Karen Wright and Turner Contemporary’s Exhibition’s team is designed to equip you with extra knowledge, material and ideas to extend your curiosity beyond the exhibition.

Entangled: Threads & Making exhibition catalogue

The new publication accompanying Entangled: Threads & Making includes a bold selection of essays and interviews that explore many different themes and areas of research in relation to works, artists and ideas in the exhibition. The book includes words from Ann Coxon, Stina Högkvist, Siri Hustvedt, Kathryn Lloyd, Rosa Martínez, Marit Paasche, Frances Morris and Karen Wright. Beautifully designed, with over 100 colour images including photographs of artists working in their studios and key artworks, this is a must-have publication for anyone enthralled by or curious about the exhibition.

The book is available from Turner Contemporary’s shop.

Eva Hesse Diaries: 1955-1970 , ed. by Barry Rosen and Tamara Bloomberg

German-born Eva Hesse (1936 – 1970) is one of the most pioneering artists of the 20th century, known for her fearless use of new forms and ephemeral materials. Hesse died in 1970 from a brain tumour at the age of 34; during her short career, her experimentation with materials played a central role in the post-minimalist movement. She famously said ‘excellence has no sex’ and would challenge questions about her gender, focusing on artistic quality irrespective of gender. Poignant and personal, her diaries and journals which she kept for the entirety of her life convey Hesse’s struggle with the quotidian and her relationships with family and friends while striving to become an artist.

Buy the book

Louise Bourgeois: The Fabric Works , Edited by Germano Celant

Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) practiced as an artist for most of her life but only started to exhibit her work when she was 70. She repeatedly explored the domestic throughout her career but didn’t use fabric or sewing in her work until the 1990s. In her later life, Bourgeois created many works based on hands. Hand, 2001 is exhibited in Entangled: Threads & Making at Turner Contemporary. This book edited by Germano Celant in collaboration with the artist and her New York studio brings together images of “The Fabric Drawings”, a series of works that Louise Bourgeois worked on from 2002 until her death in 2010. The images are collected here in their entirety for the first time.

Buy the book

Entangled: Threads & Making Installation Image, Turner Contemporary . Front: Louise Bourgeois, HAND, 2001, fabric, wood, glass and steel. Courtesy Hauser & Wirth and Cheim & Read Back: Hannah Ryggen, 6th Oktober, 1942, 1943, Tapestry. Courtesy Nordenfjeldske Kunstindustri –Museum. Photo: Stephen White

Hannah Ryggen: Weaving the World , by Julia Bjornberg and Oystein Ustvedt

Hannah Ryggen (1894-1979) was a self-taught Norwegian textile artist celebrated for her large-scale tapestries depicting the political events of the day, in particular the situation in Norway under German occupation. In Entangled: Threads & Making, Ryggen’s celebrated 6. oktober 1942 is exhibited in the UK for the first time. In it, Ryggen combines images taken from news reports and her own imagination to show the execution of theatre director Henry Gleditsch and other political prisoners by the Nazis on 7 October 1942. Weaving the World is the first substantial monograph on the Swedish-born, Norwegian modernist textile artist Hannah Ryggen (1894-1970), and presents works from her entire career with an emphasis on her political tapestries from the 1930s.

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Mona Hatoum , by Christine van Assche and Clarrie Wallis

London-based artist Mona Hatoum (b. 1952, Lebanon) merges the personal and the political, juxtaposing opposites to expose the complexities and contradictions of identity in our increasingly globalised world. In Entangled: Threads & Making, her4 Rugs (made in Egypt), 1998/2015. The skeleton pattern references the human remains still visible in Ancient Egyptian labourers’ houses near the Luxor temple, as well as the massacre of 62 tourists near the city in 1997. This book accompanies a major exhibition which took place at Tate Modern in May 2016. Beautifully designed, with 250 colour images covering the whole of Hatoum’s career and eight new essays, this is the essential book on a distinctly powerful voice in contemporary art.

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Judith Scott: Bound and Unbound by Catherine Morris, Edited by Matthew Higgs 

Judith Scott (1943-2005, USA) is known for the body of work she produced between 1987 and 2005. Scott was born with Down’s syndrome and became deaf during her infancy. She was institutionalised in Ohio for 35 years, separated from her family and her twin sister Joyce. In 1986, her twin sister won a battle with the authorities to become Judith’s legal guardian. Judith moved back to live with her sister in California where she was enrolled in a Creative Growth Arts Center, a pioneering organisation providing studio space for people with disabilities.  Here she was given complete freedom to create, and began binding her unique abstract sculptures. Scott made over 200 works at the Center, all made of found objects wrapped with carefully selected yarns. Many of her works resemble cocoons or totem poles and she never once repeated a colour scheme or three-dimensional form. In addition to illustrations of more than forty essential works and a number of essays tracing Scott’s artistic development, this book includes a previously unpublished interview with Scott’s twin sister, Joyce.

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Entangled: Threads & Making, Installation image, Annette Messager, Le Tutu Dansant, 2013, Black tutu, fan, string, Courtesy Marian Goodman Gallery, New York. Photo credit: Stephen White

Annette Messager, ed. by Catherine Grenier,

Annette Messager (b. 1943) is a French artist whose diverse body of work spans four decades and embraces a range of media including drawing, needlework, photography, sculpture and installation. Using familiar objects, she challenges us to look at the comforts of our world with fresh eyes. In Entangled: Threads & Making her Le Tutu Dansant, 2013 dances elegantly in the gallery. This monograph, made in close collaboration with the artist, incorporates first-hand interviews with Messager as well as analysis of the significance of individual works.

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The Subversive Stitch: Embroidery and the Making of the Feminine , by Roziska Parker

Rozsika Parker’s re-evaluation of the reciprocal relationship between women and embroidery has brought stitchery out from the world of female domesticity into the fine arts. ‘The Subversive Stitch’ explores the work of Louise Bourgeois and Tracey Emin, as well as the work of new young female and male embroiderers. Parker uses household accounts, women’s magazines, letters, novels and the works of art themselves to trace through history how the separation of the craft of embroidery from the fine arts came to be a major force in the marginalisation of women’s work.

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Sonia Delaunay, Costume for Amoun in Cléopâtre, c. 1909-1918 (designed), Chest bandeau and skirt. Courtesy Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

Sonia Delaunay Fashion and Fabrics, Jacques Damase

Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979) was one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. She spent the majority of her working life in Paris, eventually becoming the first living woman artist to have a retrospective at the Louvre Museum in 1964. Aside from painting, Delaunay’s practice extended to textiles and design.  One of her pieces, Costume for Amoun in Folkine’s ballet Cleopatre, 1918 features in Entangled: Threads & Making. Jacques Damase, the French publisher and art historian, inherited Delaunay’s original designs and fabric samples, many of which were photographed for the first time for this book.

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A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women: Essays on Art, Sex, and the Mind , Siri Hustvedt

Just released, the essays in this volume – all written between 2011 and 2015 – bring together pieces on particular artists and writers such as Picasso, Kiefer and Susan Sontag, as well as extensive considerations of the mind/body problem and essays tackling elusive neurological disorders such as synaesthesia and hysteria, alongside a towering reconsideration of Kierkegaard.  Siri Hustvedt is widely regarded as a leading thinker in the fields of neurology, feminism, art criticism and philosophy. Her essay, ‘The Art of a Woman?’ appears in the exhibition catalogue for Entangled: Threads & Making.

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Phyllida Barlow, Sculpture 1963 – 2015, The Fruitmarket Gallery

In Entangled: Threads and Making, Barlow’sUntitled: brokenshelf2015 stands out mysteriously from the wall – a collection of brightly painted timbers precariously bound together.  Barlow says of these works “My epiphany of what could be sculpture was to use waste materials. I used anything and everything from paper, polythene, cardboard, fabric, and many other “sheet” materials, which could easily be cut, torn, ripped, sliced. “This major monograph of Barlow’s work presents more than one hundred works, offering an indispensable resource on the practice of this important British sculptor, who continues to be lauded by artists and critics for her work and for her influence on several generations of artists.

Buy the book


Posted by: Turner Contemporary on 2 February 2017
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