Laurel Nakadate

Laurel Nakadate
29 September–11 December 2011 


Zabludowicz Collection
176 Prince of Wales Road
London NW5 3PT
Thursday–Sunday, 12–6pm or by appointment

The Zabludowicz Collection is delighted to announce the first UK solo exhibition of US artist Laurel Nakadate including an important new body of work commissioned for the exhibition. Working in film, performance and photography, Nakadate often puts herself—her body and personal relationships—at the centre of the nexus of author, artwork and audience. She creates highly charged scenes that put in play relationships premised on gender, power and sexuality. Using a finely tuned emotional tone, Nakadate’s work demonstrates an unusual level of humanity, as she foregrounds vulnerability, emotion and sensitivity with a striking level of candour. Issues of identity, social class and mental health are central to her practice. Several recent works have focused on teenagers as cyphers for universal human struggles, and as lynchpins for understanding the highs and lows of popular culture.

The exhibition brings together works made over the last ten years, including Oops! (2000), a three-channel installation in which the artist was invited into the homes of men she met through chance encounters asking them to dance with her to Britney Spears’ iconic song; and I Want to Be the One to Walk in the Sun (2006), a video featuring the artist interacting with people she meets in rural and urban locations. Often exposing herself to risk by behaving in overtly sexualized or seductive ways, Nakadate also creates scripted works featuring amateur actors, frequently teenagers, in which they appear to innocently enter into precarious situations. The exhibition will feature the impressive photographic series365 Days: A Catalogue of Tears (2010), for which the artist photographed herself crying every day for a year in order to ‘deliberately take part in sadness each day’. Nakadate has also made two feature-length films, which will be screened during the exhibition, in which she directs a series of languid teenage characters though a mundane suburban American dream, to create what she calls ‘visual fact coupled with a fictional narrative.’

The exhibition is accompanied by an extensive public programme of talks, events and screenings as well as a limited edition artist’s book designed by Malcolm Southward and including an essay by acclaimed author Rick Moody.

‘Dangerously smart, dangerously bold (and frequently just plain dangerous), Laurel Nakadate has built an indelible body of work around her provocative investigations of psychosexual identity and female power.’
—Jeffrey Kastner, Artforum.com