Safety pins, buttons, badges, pearls, bottle tops, cutlery, plastic bags, toy soldiers and keys form an inventory of objects that Blame has innovatively adapted to create his trademark jewellery and other accessories. Throughout his career and still today Blame has maintained his artistic underpinning of making jewellery from found and re-purposed objects which continue to inspire alongside his prolific contributions via social media, revealing his idiosyncratic and resourceful approach to life through images and objects.
With a career that spans over 35 years, Blame was one of the architects and key faces of London’s underground club culture in the late 1970’s and early 80’s – a boom time for unfettered creativity whose energies continue to fuel the fashion industry today. Blame formed many important creative collaborations with the likes of Ray Petri, Neneh Cherry, Jean Baptiste Mondino, Christopher Nemeth and Derek Jarman, as well as his widely recognised affiliations with legendary boutique The House of Beauty and Culture. More recent creative relationships include Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons and Louis Vuitton amongst others.
The exhibition is presented as a montage rather than a chronology that brings together an arrangement of artefacts, including clothing, collages, jewellery, fashion editorials, sketchbooks and T-shirts alongside unique commissions that bear witness to Blame’s tactile, thought-provoking, approach to fashion and his propensity towards collaboration and experimentation.
Judy Blame’s exhibition follows recent explorations into the 1980s including a presentation of drawings by artist and infamous night-clubber Trojan (2012), an ICA Off-Site project entitled A Journey Through London Subculture: 1980s to Now (2013) as well as exhibitions of paintings by the late poet David Robilliard (2014) and photographs by Smiler, aka Mark Cawson (2015). Judy Blame: Never Again seeks to present an evaluation of his creative approach and draw parallels between his practice and how a more recent generation work today
The exhibition will be accompanied by a limited edition zine compiled by Judy Blame.