“In the Black Fantastic” at the Hayward Gallery

The Hayward Gallery, situated on London’s South Bank, is one of the city’s most iconic and influential contemporary art institutions. It was designed by architects Norman Engleback, Ron Herron, and Warren Chalk and officially opened its doors in 1968 as part of the Southbank Centre complex. The gallery was named after the late Sir Isaac Hayward, a former leader of the London County Council, who played a crucial role in the development of the Southbank Centre.

Throughout its history, the Hayward Gallery has been at the forefront of showcasing innovative and groundbreaking contemporary art. It has organized numerous exhibitions featuring both established and emerging artists, across various mediums including painting, sculpture, photography, and installation art. The gallery’s dedication to promoting contemporary artistic expression has solidified its reputation as a vital cultural hub in London and beyond. Its distinctive brutalist architecture, characterized by its concrete exterior and interconnected pyramid-shaped roof lights, has made it a recognizable and cherished landmark on the South Bank, contributing to its enduring legacy in the world of contemporary art.

“In the Black Fantastic” at Hayward Gallery was single handedly one of the most powerful visual representations of African / black modern art I’ve seen at this moment in time. The curation was simply brilliant. My favorite pieces of the show were Lina Iris Viktor’s work. The blackness of the female represented through her images were profound.

This show gave me the space to really reflect on art – specifically black art in the modern art world.

Plus, I loved it so much that I purchased the show book.