Contemporary British artist Idris Khan returns to the Whitworth for a solo exhibition of painting, drawing and photography, which will showcase a number of the London-based artist’s seminal works. Khan first became known for his photography-based pieces, in which he digitally overlapped all of Constable’s paintings, the staves from each of Chopin’s Nocturnes or every page in the Quran. His subsequent work has continued to explore a fascination with memory and cumulative experience, frequently using text, printing and painting to achieve the metaphysical collapse of time into a single moment.
On display here will be Eternal Movement (2011), originally commissioned for Sadler’s Wells Theatre, Beginning or End (2013), made with black gesso and ink, and Death of Painting (2014), a series of five oil paintings on paper. Khan will also be creating a monumental new wall drawing in the gallery space. Drawing inspiration from the history of art, music, philosophy and theology, Khan’s artworks act as palimpsests – displaying both literal layering as well as an archaeology of meaning.