Kate Davis: Not Just the Perfect Moments


4 December – 2 February 2013

PV: 1 December 3 – 6pm


Kate Davis presents newly commissioned drawings alongside recent works exhibited in London for the first time. Although Davis works across a range of media, drawing remains the critical core of her visual vocabulary; this exhibition will be the first time she addresses her relationship to drawing (as a medium, activity and history) directly.

Questioning how to bear witness to the complexities of the past, Davis’ artwork is an attempt to reconsider what certain histories could look, sound and feel like. This has often involved responding to the aesthetic and political ambiguities of historical art works and their reception. Focusing on ideologies perpetuated through certain approaches to the teaching and viewing of drawing, Not Just the Perfect Moments is an attempt, informed by the art and writings of Jo Spence, and by the actions of militant suffragette Mary Raleigh Richardson, to re-examine and unpick some of the ways in which representational practices, such as drawing, have constructed and complicated perceptions of the female body.
Not Just the Perfect Moments will present a new installation drawn from images of works by Jo Spence in various archives; an exploration of instructional drawing material; and Davis’ installation, Curtain I – VII which references Mary Raleigh Richardson's slashing of Velasquez's painting The Toilet of Venus at the National Gallery, London in 1914, and the subsequent concealment of that act. Spence’s groundbreaking photographic works often asked who owned images and especially images of the body. In this exhibition, as is the case with much of Davis’ practice, photography and drawing are brought into close relation, and both are questioned as techniques for challenging, creating and caring for representations of the body.


Notes to Editors:

Drawing Room explores ideas around contemporary drawing and makes them visible in the public domain.  As the only public gallery and non-profit organisation in the UK and Europe dedicated to contemporary drawing, it provides a unique resource for the promotion of drawing, its practice, theory and methodology. Drawing Room is located in Bermondsey, south east London, in premises shared with the artist studio organisation Tannery Arts.  Drawing Room is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation (NPO).  Its programme is also supported by the auction of works from the Drawing Biennial, Patrons,  Drawing Circle membership schemes and donations.
Kate Davis (born 1977, New Zealand) lives and works in Glasgow. Davis has recently had solo exhibitions at: GoMA, Glasgow; Museo de la Ciudad and La Galeria de Comercio, Mexico (2010); CCA, Glasgow (two-person commission with Faith Wilding for Glasgow International) (2010); Galerie Kamm, Berlin (2011), Sorcha Dallas, Glasgow (2008), Tate Britain, London (2007) and Kunsthalle Basel (2006). Her work has also been shown as part of: eva International 2012 (curated by Annie Fletcher), Limerick, Ireland; Sanctuary/Comraich (curated by Sophie Crichton Stuart and James Mackay), Mount Stuart, Isle of Bute, Scotland (2012); The End of the Line: Attitudes in Drawing, a Hayward Touring Exhibition (2009), Art Sheffield 10 (collaborative commission with Jimmy Robert) (2010); Das Gespinst, Stadtisches Museum Abteiberg, Monchengladbach (2009); Poetical Political, Simon Lee Gallery, London (2007); Like Leaves, Tanya Bonakdar Gallery (curated by Caoimhin Mac Giolla Leith), New York (2007) and If I can’t dance I don’t want to be part of your revolution, De Appel Amsterdam (2006). Davis has been awarded a Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship and residencies at Camden Arts Centre, London, Banff Arts Center, Canada and Cove Park, in Argyll and Bute, Scotland. Forthcoming projects include a group exhibition at Museo Rufino Tamayo, Mexico (curated by Adam Szymczyk) and a solo exhibition at Temporary Gallery, Cologne (curated by Regina Barunke). Kate Davis is represented by Galerie Kamm, Berlin.


I Wish I Could Draw on Sat 19 January 2013, 1.30am – 5.30pm. A forum and workshop exploring and questioning the history and practice of teaching, learning and performing representational figure drawing.
Kate Davis in conversation with Roger Malbert, Senior Curator, Hayward Touring, Southbank Centre, London , Mon 21 January 2013, 6.30pm
Image captions: Kate Davis, Having Put Herself in the Picture, 2012, framed pencil drawing and screen-print on paper with circular mirror, 63 cm (w) x 87 cm (h) x 5 cm (d)


Listings info:

Kate Davis: Not Just the Perfect Moments, 4 December 2012 – 2 February 2013, Drawing Room, Tannery Arts, 12 Rich Estate, Crimscott Street, London SE1 5TE, [email protected] ,, Tel: 0207 394 5657, FREE ADMISSION, Tue/ Wed/ Thur/ Fri  11am till 6pm Sat 12 – 6pm

Tube: Bermondsey, London Bridge, Borough, from London Bridge it is a twelve minute walk and Borough station is a ten minute walk. Two minutes walk from buses stopping on Tower Bridge Road/Grange Road

Further info:

For further information and high resolution images please contact Laura Eldret, Comms Manager [email protected] or 020 7394 5657

Curtain I - VII, 2011
Curtain I - VII, 2011
Series of seven digital pigment fine art prints. Seven x 84 x 64 x 4 cm