This programme takes place within Theaster Gates's installation Black Image Corporation presented by Prada, The Vinyl Factory, and The Showroom. Collective Intimacy is inspired by Gates’s ethos of collaboration and The Showroom’s commitment to togetherness and communal knowledge, taking on multiple trans-located narratives of the current Black experience as a point of departure for a cosmopolitan worldview. In response to Gates’s reactivated spaces in Chicago and how his socially engaged projects enable communities to connect and grow, Collective Intimacy aims to create a new space for people to gather, listen, converse, and contemplate amongst a fusion of art, design, music, and everyday life.
Black Image Corporation presents distinct spaces creating a myriad of possibilities for collective engagements, featuring an installation of Gates’s art objects, furnishings, and new films that capture the methodologies of urban renewal and community activation founding his practice. Pieces from Chicago imbued with powerful histories, uses, and localities resonate with distinctive lounge design from here in London – like a love letter between two cities, under the roof of a new House. Taking place at both 180 The Strand and The Showroom, Collective Intimacy hosts interdisciplinary interventions by artists, musicians, designers, writers, thinkers, collectives and members of the public, who are all invited to distort notions of selfhood and togetherness in the spirit of creating a global community.
Grace Wales Bonner launched her eponymous label in 2014, following her graduation from Central Saint Martins. Established as a menswear brand, Wales Bonner’s soulful tailoring soon expanded to womenswear. In 2015, she was awarded Emerging Menswear Designer at the British Fashion Awards. In 2016, following her first solo runway presentation - Ezekiel, she received the LVMH Young Designer Prize. In 2019, Wales Bonner was invited by Maria Grazia Chiuri to collaborate with Dior to re-interpret their New Look silhouette for the Resort 2020 collection; shortly afterwards, she was announced the winner of the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund. In January 2019, Grace Wales Bonner presented her first institutional exhibition, A Time for New Dreams at London’s Serpentine Galleries. She is an associate lecturer at Central Saint Martins, London and has lectured at Parsons School of Design, New York City.
Samuel Ross is the founder, designer and creative director of A-COLD-WALL*, CONCRETE OBJECTS and POLYTHENE OPTICS. He studied Graphic Design & Illustration at De Montfort University and is the recipient of the Hublot Design Prize (2019), the BFC GQ Fashion Fund Award (2019), British Emerging Talent Menswear (2018). He is featured on the Forbes 30 Under 30 Europe (2019), and a finalist for LVMH Award (2018), ANDAM Award (2018) and the British Fashion Award Nominee for Emerging Talent Menswear (2017).
Image: Grace Wales Bonner, Samuel Ross & Elvira Dyangani Ose In Conversation, Performance Documentation, 2019. Courtesy of The Showroom