Stephen Friedman Gallery hosts Denzil Forrester in conversation with Ann Gallagher
Stephen Friedman Gallery is delighted to host an online talk between Grenada-born British artist Denzil Forrester and Ann Gallagher (former Director of Collection, British Art, Tate) on Wednesday 7 October, 5–6pm. The conversation will be moderated by Jonathan Horrocks (Associate Director, Stephen Friedman Gallery) and there will be an opportunity for the audience to ask questions during the event.
Forrester will be discussing his forthcoming solo exhibition ‘Denzil Forrester in Rome’, which explores the formative role of his fellowship at the British School at Rome from 1983 to 1985. Initially intended for Frieze Masters, Stephen Friedman Gallery will present the project in a specially designed space at 30 Old Burlington Street between 5–31 October 2020. Forrester will also discuss his institutional touring solo exhibition ‘Itchin & Scratchin’, his recent residency in Jamaica and how the reggae scene of London in the 1980s continues to inspire his work.
Born in Grenada in 1956, Denzil Forrester moved to London in 1967. He now lives and works in Cornwall. Forrester received a BA in Fine Art from the Central School of Art, London, in 1979 and an MA in Fine Art from the Royal College of Art, London, in 1983. For four decades, Forrester’s works have captured the transcendental rhythms of the London reggae and dub scene of the early 1980s. Combining ecstatic, gestural forms with vivid colour, Forrester’s dynamic compositions immortalise the characters and vibrant energy of London’s underground nightclubs. In contrast to the joyful liberation depicted in these works, his paintings simultaneously explore the racial and social injustice experienced in 1980s Britain. Policemen frequently feature as menacing figures in his works, whilst others depict the events surrounding the untimely death of his friend Winston Rose.
Forrester's first solo exhibition at Stephen Friedman Gallery opened in April 2019, accompanied by a monograph with texts by Peter Doig, Matthew Higgs and Sam Thorne. A large-scale public artwork by Forrester for Brixton Underground Station, London was unveiled by TFL in September 2019. Forrester’s mid-career survey ‘Itchin & Scratchin’ will travel to Spike Island, Bristol in October 2020 from Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham. Forrester’s work will feature in a major exhibition at Tate Britain, London in 2021 devoted to Caribbean connections in British art since the 1950s.Forrester’s works can be found in the collections of Tate, London; Arts Council Collection; and Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston, among many others. His work has been exhibited internationally at venues including The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; Tate Britain, London; Ashmolean Museum, Oxford; Whitechapel Gallery, London; Royal Academy of Arts, London; and Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow. His work was the focus of three solo shows curated by Peter Doig and Matthew Higgs at White Columns, New York (2016); Tramps, London (2016); and Jackson Foundation, St Just, Cornwall (2018).