Amartey Golding - Bring Me To Heal
A new exhibition by artist Amartey Golding - his first solo UK tour.
Bring Me to Heal is a new large-scale co-commission led by Forma Arts & Media combining filmmaking, music, photography and a handcrafted garment to highlight generational trauma in Britain and offer collective rituals of healing. The installation at Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts marks the beginning of a UK tour that will see further presentations with partners Tramway and 198 Contemporary Arts & Learning.
Golding often turns to his Anglo-Scottish and Ghanaian ancestry by way of a Rastafarian upbringing as a point of departure to explore the drivers of human behaviour. Through film, photography and an increasingly labour-intensive process of sculpture, he creates dreamlike spaces, steeped in historical reference in which to locate characters experiencing moments of immutable change - points of no return that often leave the future hanging in the balance.
A centrepiece of the commission is an ornate hand knotted garment made of human hair that has been intricately designed by Golding in collaboration with the Shepperton Wig Company and hair artist Kevin Fortune, using a pattern that blends references from afro hair styles to the body art of ancient Britons. Born from a lengthy process it is a symbol of healing and reflection; using the hair of potentially thousands of people, each strand was hand knotted and tended to by a group of producers for the purposes of collective healing.
Through the films the garment is brought to life when worn by Solomon Golding - Amartey’s brother and a dancer in his own right. We follow the character as he is nurtured into existence by a group of three nomadic Brothers in the English countryside or brought to a point of reckoning with our violent past within the opulence of the V&A museum, exposing a potent vulnerability. As the title suggests, the work searches for the point at which the tide of trauma can be steered towards a process of healing and away from further embedding itself in our collective psyche.
For this, Golding looks to the vital restorative work undertaken by Rastafarian and many other communities dealing with generational trauma and in a radical shift, applies these same techniques of context, accountability and compassion to the White British experience. Bring Me To Heal is a plea, an invocation for us to acknowledge the importance of understanding our emotional past and to establish a more equitable future. It is also a warning of the consequences we will continue to face if we don't.
Duration of the installation is 50 minutes - showings start on the hour, each hour (last entry 7pm weekdays, 5pm weekends).
Advanced booking recommended but walk ups and drop ins welcome, subject to availability.
Audience for each showing is maximum 30 people - to enable comfort and social distancing in the auditorium
Visitors to the exhibition can also watch The Making Of Amartey Golding's Bring Me to Heal documentary, by Foreign Body productions (25 minutes duration), downstairs in the Jane Attenborough Studio at Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts
The cafe bar will be open during installation showing times.
Alongside the exhibition, there are a series of events organised by The Space to Come: a Feeling Tour on Thursday 25 November at 6pm, a Reasoning on Saturday 27 November at 5pm and a Well Fed: Fish n Chips and Compassion dinner on Saturday 27 November at 6.30pm.
Amartey Golding’s Bring Me to Heal series is a Forma Arts & Media commission in collaboration with 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning, Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, Victoria & Albert Museum and Tramway. It is further supported by Arts Council England, The Golsoncott Foundation, Henry Moore Foundation and Lighthouse as part of Re-Imagine Europe.
Image Credit: Amartey Golding, Bring Me to Heal (2021), Video Still. Image courtesy of the artist and Forma Arts & Media.
Dates & TimesThursday 18 November, 2021
– Saturday 27 November, 2021
Duration 1 hour