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Barbara Walker | Louder Than Words

Solo show at Unit 2 Gallery, London Metropolitan University. 2006
Date: 18 November, 2006 until 16 December, 2006
Organiser: Unit 2 Gallery

Louder Than Words was a solo exhibition by Barbara Walker, an artist based in Birmingham. The exhibition was held at Unit 2 Gallery, London Metropolitan University, 18 November - 16 December 2006. The exhibition consisted of a number of drawings of the artist’s son, and related drawings of neighbourhood scenes of the area of Biringham in which the artist and some of her family members live. A number of these drawings were executed on enlargments of ‘stop and search’ chits, as issued to Walker’s hapless son, by West Midlands Police officers. The exhibition set out to explore the impact of ‘stop and search’ on the artist’s son, and Walker herself, as a mother.

The text for the exhibition brochure was written by Eddie Chambers. Titled ‘It’s a Bit Much’, the text touched on the significance of the film ‘Handsworth Songs’, made by the Black Audio Film Collective. The film was referenced by Chambers for the ways in which, in his view, “One of the most disturbing aspects of this contemporary footage is the way in which areas such as Handsworth are shown as being, in effect, territory which is occupied by the police, as much as it is occupied by regular people going about their normal day to day activities. This sense of Handsworth and surrounding areas being virtually under siege by the police is reinforced, time and time again, by newsreel and by the recounted experiences and opinions of aggrieved and frustrated residents. Within Handsworth Songs we hear from a variety of Black Brummies who are sick and tired of being perceived as drug peddlers and other criminals, and who resent the intrusive, disruptive and aggressive policing that they feel targets them.”

This body of work was subsequently shown at Vane, Newcastle upon Tyne, 8 - 31 October 2009.

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Brochure relating to an exhibition, 2006

People in this exhibition

»  Barbara Walker MBE

Born, 1964 in Birmingham

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