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Lubaina Himid: So Many Dreams at Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts de Lausanne (MCBA)

Conversation: December 1, 6:30–8:30pm, Lubaina Himid with Kadiatou Diallo and Nicole Schweizer

Les Urbaines Festival: December 2–4,Performance program
MCBA Auditorium

November 4, 2022–February 5, 2023

The Lubaina Himid (b. 1954, Zanzibar) exhibition at the Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts de Lausanne (MCBA) provides a comprehensive look at the artist’s body of work for her first solo exhibition in Switzerland.

From her pivotal role in the British Black Arts movement in the 1980s to her winning of the prestigious Turner Prize in 2017, Lubaina Himid has been a significant figure in contemporary art. She has continuously explored the possibilities that painting offers while challenging the narratives it conveys. She has done this by bringing attention to both the spectacular moments in ordinary life and to historical events that have been obscured.

Lubaina Himid has been a practicing artist for more than 40 years. She is also a trailblazing curator who supports artists from the diaspora. Having received her initial training as a theatre designer at Wimbledon College of Art before earning her master’s degree at the Royal College of Art in London, Lubaina Himid has since created a powerful and distinctive body of work whose imagery and inspiration draw as much from her interest in theater and opera as they do from her study of colonial histories and their contemporary repercussions. She is also inspired by the history of Western painting and by textile patterns from around the world.

The exhibition Lubaina Himid: So Many Dreams, which consists of vividly colored paintings, large-scale installations, and soundscapes, is a singular chance to learn about the breadth and depth of the artist’s output. The exhibition is organized along a number of narrative arcs that address issues such as the relationship between locations and their histories, the revival of historical memory in the present, and the transmission of specific stories through color, pattern, and sound. Never is a narrative simple or linear. In her works, the artist creates environments that prompt us to consider the spaces both we and the figures in the paintings occupy. The exhibition galleries play out like scenes from a play in which the audience is involved.

Revenge (1991–1992), Plan B (1999), and Le Rodeur (2016–18) are three painting series that have been brought together in this exhibition for the first time. They engage in conversation with works from every phase of the artist’s career, from the well-known installation A Fashionable Marriage (1984) to the most recent sound installations like Old Boat/New Money (2019) and Blue Grid Test (2020). “What are monuments for?” “What does love sound like?” “How do you distinguish safety from danger?” Through her luminous and powerful body of work and the questions it raises, Lubaina Himid offers us views of history that have been revisited through the prism of the imagination.

Exhibition organised by Tate Modern, London, in collaboration with MCBA.

Curated by Michael Wellen, Senior Curator, International Art, Tate Modern.
Curated at MCBA by Nicole Schweizer, Curator of contemporary art.

Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts de Lausanne (MCBA)
Place de la Gare 16
1003 Lausanne

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