Bonded: Sarah Muirhead
with guests Paula Rego & Leonor Fini
The question of the body looms large and desirously in this extraordinary exhibition, which develops from Muirhead’s fascination with both the physicality and spirit of a body and its potential for pleasure, pain and expression therein. Like a latter-day Degas, Muirhead’s subjects appear as characters whose lives figure on the fringes of the mainstream. Dancers, acrobats and tattooed bodies are among the range featured in her mosaic of post-modernity. With exquisite detail and a sublime painterly quality her paintings are compelling us to consider the Other and the self-determining body in a new light.
Immediately following her graduation from Edinburgh School of Art in 2009, Muirhead was selected by cultural commentator and journalist Kirsty Wark during the Murmur pop-up show at Selfridges, which included Judges Tracey Emin and Kevin Spacey. Muirhead also went on to an acclaimed solo show at Lazarides Outsiders.
Following a restorative period of non-work Muirhead has thankfully returned to the art scene. Having chosen Leyden Gallery as the people to work with in this re-launch show, they are delighted to be collaborating with one of the UK’s most talented emerging artists. Sarah Muirhead decided upon Leyden gallery as it is fast becoming known for its imaginative curation and forward-thinking programming of exhibitions and events, plus its growing support of emerging artists.
Although Bonded is billed as a solo show, curator Adriana Cerne brings Muirhead’s work into a challenging and discursively engaged relation to two other artists, whom she refers to as ‘guests’ in this ground-breaking show. For the first time the internationally renowned Paula Rego and the late surrealist Leonor Fini are shown together. To join Muirhead’s figurative art work there will be a lithographic print by Regocalled The Unicorn Artist, and a group of five works on paper by Leonor Fini.
The concept of the muse is core to each of these women’s work and here becomes a visible force in the practices of three unique, powerful and striking artists.