Brighton 3–6 August
About the work
Originally planned to coincide with the opening of a major outdoor commission for the recently closed Brighton Centre for Contemporary Art, Helen Cammock’s ‘All About Love’ commission the deepest crease in the fold of stone and the sweet taste of salt (2023) has morphed from an ode to Brighton and its many folds, into a plea and a challenge to its institutions to support and nurture the contemporary visual arts in a more structured, sustained and existential way.
the deepest crease in the fold of stone and the sweet taste of salt (2023) encompasses bold coloured artworks and fragments of poetic text, inviting passers-by to contemplate the power of creativity, asking questions about what we value and urging Brighton to preserve its vibrant habitat of ideas.
Cammock writes: “At this critical moment as the arts and arts education are being so aggressively undermined across the country, this takeover attempts to ask us why we don’t value the space created within art for thought and the generation of ideas and why society can’t acknowledge the transformative activation that art can offer us. Art is full of stories and enquiry that use form and often complex aesthetic strategies to ask us to both think and feel – and sometimes to act. This project isn’t closed behind gallery walls and I love the idea that people may happen upon the works in their everyday activity.”
About Helen Cammock
Helen Cammock has been a resident of Brighton since 1989. Her works often cut across time and geography, layering multiple voices as she investigates the cyclical nature of histories in her visual and aural assemblages. Through film, photography, print, text, song and performance, Cammock examines mainstream historical and contemporary narratives about Blackness, womanhood, oppression and resistance, wealth and power, poverty and vulnerability, throughout her practice.
In 2017, Cammock won the Max Mara Art Prize for Women and in 2019 was the joint recipient of The Turner Prize. She has exhibited and performed worldwide with recent and current solo shows including They Call it Idlewild, Oakville Galleries, Ontario, Canada (2023); I Will Keep My Soul, Art + Practice, Los Angeles, USA, (2023); Behind The Eye Is The Promise Of Rain, Kestner Gesellshaft, Hannover, Germany (2022); Concrete Feathers and Porcelain Tacks, The Photographer’s Gallery, London, UK (2021), Beneath the Surface of Skin; STUK Art Centre, Leuven, Belgium (2021); Che Si Può Fare (What Can be Done), Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK (2019), Che Si Può Fare, Collezione Maramotti, Reggio Emilia, Italy (2019) and The Long Note, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Ireland (2019); VOID, Derry, Northern Ireland (2018). Group shows include Breathing, Hamburger Kuntshalle, Hamburg, Germany (2022) and Radio Ballads, Serpentine Galleries, London, UK (2022). She has an upcoming solo show at Amant, New York, March 2023 and a new book with Siglio Press and rivers Institute in April 2023 called I Will Keep My Soul. She is represented by Kate MacGarry, London.
Cammock’s site-specific works will be taking over billboards and advertising spaces across Brighton and Hove between 3–6 August, at prominent locations including Lewes Road, Elm Grove, Spring Gardens, Seven Dials, Surrey Street and Portland Road.
Special Events & Performances
On Wednesday 2 August, Helen Cammock will be in conversation with director of Brighton Centre for Contemporary Art (Brighton CCA), Ben Roberts, executive director of Phoenix Art Space Lucy Day, ProjectOurs artist Liz Rose, moderated by author and The Art Newspaper journalist Anny Shaw.
This launch event is an opportunity to platform vital conversations about what it means to value art – as a practice and as a cultural context. Bringing together voices from Brighton’s arts scene, the event will explore the importance of preserving and nurturing arts education, looking at what changes are necessary to create a more hopeful future for artists and the wider art ecosystem in Brighton and beyond.
Images: Helen Cammock, the deepest crease in the fold of stone and the sweet taste of salt (2023) All About Love commission by BUILDHOLLYWOOD. Photos: Kevin Lake and Steven Wiggins.