Huma Bhabha: Against Time at BALTIC, Gateshead

Sara Jaspan, Exhibitions Editor
Huma Bhabha: Against Time at Baltic, Gateshead
In the Shadow of the Sun, 2016, courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York

The Making of Husbands: Christina Ramberg in Dialogue at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Newcastle 19 September 2020 — 21 February 2021 Entrance is free — Visit now

Huma Bhabha’s figurative sculptures have the appearance of strange creatures that have arrived on Earth from elsewhere. Yet they also carry some deeply recognisable quality, as if formed from the very cloth of human history and culture; born from a place outside of time. Typically assembled from a combination of cork, Styrofoam and clay, as well as discarded materials such as rubber tires, chicken wire and animal bones, their physical composition is as diverse as the broad range of cultural influences from which they are hewn, from ancient Egyptian statuary, African art, Classicalism, Cubism and German Expressionism to science fiction and horror films.

Now, members of this distinct family of ‘characters’ (as Bhabha describes them) are about to assemble at BALTIC in Gateshead for what marks the Karachi-born, New York based artist’s first major survey exhibition in Europe, spanning the last 20 years of her career. Here, they will be presented alongside a selection of her photographs, collages, prints and drawings, which point to the important themes of colonialism, war, displacement, identity and memory that Bhabha’s practice addresses. Inspired by her return visits to Pakistan, these expressive works on paper show traces of ruined, abandoned or undeveloped places, reflected in the half-exposed, dismembered or crumbling make-up of their sculptural counterparts.

For those who may have encountered the artist’s towering public realm commission, Receiver, outside Country Hall in Wakefield at Yorkshire Sculpture International 2019, Against Time at BALTIC marks an exciting opportunity to explore the breadth of Bhabha’s work up close and in greater depth. Yet, as its alluring title indicates, the exhibition also offers more than this – a chance to take a step back, perhaps, from the embroiled details of our present and consider the human condition in a broader sense, whilst remaining engaged with the realities of our time.

The Making of Husbands: Christina Ramberg in Dialogue at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Newcastle 19 September 2020 — 21 February 2021 Entrance is free Visit now

Where to go near Huma Bhabha: Against Time at BALTIC, Gateshead

Trakol
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Trakol

On the Gateshead quayside, underneath the Tyne bridge is one of the best locations to go for a meal in Newcastle and Gateshead. In what was once derelict land on the quayside, now exists a fantastic shipping container village of purposely rusted shipping containers.

Shipley Art Gallery
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Shipley Art Gallery

The Shipley Art Gallery can be found on Prince Consort Road (named after Queen Victoria’s Husband – Prince Albert) and was created in 1917 after Joseph Shipley, a local solicitor, bestowed his collection of 504 paintings to create a gallery for local people.

CBK Adventures
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CBK Adventures

CBK Adventures deliver award-winning coastal activities including guided tours and lessons in kayaking and paddle boarding.

Quayside
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Quayside

The Quayside of Newcastle (and its sister town of Gateshead) is a hugely popular location in the city, featuring seven bridges spanning the impressive river, linking Newcastle to Gateshead and providing scope for many walks and tourist attraction.

Live Theatre
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Live Theatre

The Live Theatre has a fantastic reputation for developing, writing and producing new plays and shows every year. The Live Theatre started in 1973. It was at first a traveling theatre company, which started by telling stories that were relatable to daily life in the North East of England and presented these plays to local people – which it has continued to do to this day.

The Side Gallery
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The Side Gallery

The Side Gallery can be found on a small medieval street down by Newcastle’s Quayside. The Gallery itself is inside of an old warehouse, which by itself is a fantastic building to explore. Once you have entered the gallery, you are walking into one of the most important collections of film and photography in the British Isles.

Newcastle Castle
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Newcastle Castle

Discover the castle that gave Newcastle its name, taking in a 12th-century fortress that has been added to over the centuries.

Boiler Shop
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Boiler Shop

A Grade II* Listed former locomotive works from the 1820’s, now and events space hosting some of Newcastle’s most exciting event; from live performances, club nights and exhibitions, to food and drink festivals.

The Literary and Philosophical Society
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The Literary and Philosophical Society

A stone’s throw from Newcastle’s Central Station, and around the corner from Newcastle’s Castle, is The Lit and Phil. Only a few years younger than Manchester’s, The Lit and Phil is the second oldest literary and philosophical society in the United Kingdom.

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Saltwell Park

Nestled in the heart of Gateshead, the beautiful, historical grounds of Saltwell Park are a perfect place to spend the day.

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