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Lubaina Himid | Revenge - catalogue

Catalogue relating to an exhibition, 1992
Published by: Rochdale Art Gallery
Year published: 1992
Number of pages: 40

image of Lubaina Himid | Revenge - catalogue

“I want to show my truths, my illusions and my prophesies and legends. Colour is a vital element a wild bold and tumultuous brushing on of a wide palette” Lubaina Himid, Revenge catalogue inside cover.

Catalogue produced by Rochdale Art Gallery to accompany the exhibition Revenge: A masque in five tableaux, by Lubaina Himid. No dates for the exhibition are stated, though the catalogue had a note, ‘Published May 1992’. The catalogue had a number of colour plates throughout, as well as one on the cover (reproduced inside the catalogue in monochrome). From the Introduction: “Rochdale Art Gallery is very pleased to present ‘Revenge’, a new series of work by Lubaina Himid. ‘Revenge’ takes place at the forefront of the art of the 1990s, representing an artist engaging with art and life and making use of the gallery as a site for this critical discourse. In ‘Revenge’ Lubaina Himid addresses the feminist critique of painting, she contemplates and re-orders the making of history, she creates work that is both celebration and mourning.

As a Black woman artist of international importance and influence, Lubaina Himid is recognised for her radical contribution to the avant garde. ‘Revenge’ will give audiences in this country locally and nationally, the opportunity to see her new work, shown in the gallery space for which it was painted.”

The catalogue featured two supporting essays. The first, ‘Women Artists and Modernism’, by Jill Morgan. The second, ‘Without Tides, No Maps’, by Maud Sulter. Both essays seek to put Himid’s work into a variety of art historical contexts. From Jill Morgan’s essay: “The locus of Lubaina Himid’s new installation at Rochdale Art Gallery is the making of a monument by women - she carries the argument around modes of representation, modernism and subversion’s objects to the site of the gallery for a discourse between life and art that is right at the cutting edge of our thinking. Revenge comes back at us with issues that have been allowed to go off the agenda; the role of women artists in relation to radical art movements, the suppression of Black women’s achievements as artists, the subversive nature of women’s practice in relation to modernism, the oppression of Black people’s culture by Western art institutions. The silence of the left on these matters is huge; Revenge, with its richness of ideas, its interweaving of time and place, its painterly daring, its celebration of Black women’s Creativity, its mourning of history, fills the silence with a glorious sound, stronger even, than Ethel Smyth’s Requiem.”

From Sulter’s essay: “The artistic power of Lubaina Himid’s creativity resides in its ability to take on board the massive isues of history and translate them into a language which gives voice to the disenfranchised; by race by class by gender. In positioning us at the centre of the circle she challenges bourgeois posturings of post-modernism and trendy proccupations (sic) with marginality.”

Catalogue contents:


Images and text relating to the five tableaux

Women Artists and Modernism, Jill Morgan

Without Tides, No Maps, Maud Sulter

Extract from Gold Blooded Warrior, an unpublished novel by Maud Sulter, 1989

Artist’s CV, and portrait photograph, plus the following biographical note:

“Born in Zanzibar in 1954 Lubaina Himid studied theatre design at Wimbledon Art School and has a Masters degree in Cultural History from the Royal College of Art. She is currently engaged in doctoral research under the supervision of Jane Beckett at the University of East Anglia.

Lubaina Himid is a Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at Lancashire Polytechnic. Her home and studios are in Preston where she lives with the artist and writer Maud Sulter and their two wire fox terriers.”

Related people

»  Lubaina Himid MBE, CBE

Born, 1954 in Zanzibar, Tanzania

»  Maud Sulter

Born, 1960 in Glasgow, Scotland. Died, 2008

Related exhibitions

Related venues

»  Rochdale Art Gallery

Rochdale, United Kingdom

»  Royal Festival Hall

London, United Kingdom