In her paintings, figurative cut-outs and installations, Lubaina Himid approaches questions of identity through the celebration of Black creativity and political agency. Her practice as an artist, curator and professor challenges institutional narratives that have systematically overlooked and erased the legacy of slavery and the foundational contributions to society made by the African diaspora.
An installation and four paintings by Himid are presented in Unsettled Objects. Feeling Colour by Touch (2019) at first seems like an innocent dressing table, but the drawings inside its drawers transform it to a historical cabinet of the potentially dispossessed or disappeared. Half-hidden, half-visible, the work begs the question: Who are these surprise witnesses to our affection? In three new paintings, Leave to Cool, Staying In and Going Out (2020) created during the lockdown associated with COVID-19, the artist uses complex constellations of colour to explore intimacy and proximity.