Amelia Barratt’s Annotations project connects drawing with the voice, sound and the written word. It revolves around an elusive librarian, a rendition of a character frequently used in Barratt’s written work. She is anachronistic, fearful, droll and finely tuned to the minutiae of her everyday environment.
Librarian is an immersive sound installation featuring the voice of her frequent collaborator Mark Barratt, which situates the visitor in the librarian’s place of work. Each visitor is invited to view the installation alone on selected days during the residency period. In the darkened library, a monologue fills the room with a spoken autofiction. Books and the dehumidifier are the only companions to the busy worker, who wears a bell on her keys so that she can hear herself move. Barratt’s text offers a voice to the particular intimacy and quietness of a library, intensified by the present limitations on human closeness and public vocal expression.
Librarian is accompanied by a new body of works on paper, a selection of which will be on show in Outset Study. These ‘performance drawings’ hold a place for physical touch and emotional intensity, seeming to counter Barratt’s sober librarian. A fluid crouching figure in a hat is captured by a spotlight, while the inner life of our narrator finds expression in the feathery wings of a housefly. Working across performance, painting, printmaking and fictive writing, Barratt revisits her ongoing interests in the voice, archive, satire and still life.
The script for Librarian will be available in the form of a special edition screen print designed by Maeve Redmond.
Amelia Barratt (b.1989, Reading) lives and works in London. She studied BA Painting and Printmaking at The Glasgow School of Art (2011) and received an MFA from Slade School of Art, London (2016). Performance works have recently been shown at Seventeen, London (2020); Live Art Development Agency, London (2019); Museum of London (2018); Cubitt Gallery, London (2018); Glasgow International (2018); Assembly Point, London (2018); Edinburgh College of Art (2017); and CCA, Glasgow (2017). Selected group exhibitions include Artists I Steal From, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London (2019); The Dark Wood, Transition Gallery, London (2017); All Day Breakfast: Selected Works on Paper, Reading International, Reading (2017); The Small Press Project, University College London, London (2016).
Annotations II is a series of artist residencies and commissions for Drawing Room’s Outset Study. It follows on from the successful Annotations project and continues to provide artists with a period of supported residency, researching the library collection to create a work for Outset Study - using the wall, the space, or intervening within the library collection itself.
Annotations II is funded by Emma Goltz.