The Legacy of Malcolm McLaren: The Art

21 May 2016

Regular hours

10:00 – 18:00

Cost of entry

£7.00 to £8.00

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ICA (Institute of Contemporary Arts)

London, United Kingdom


Travel Information

  • Piccadilly Circus/Charing Cross
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A panel discussion addressing the influence of the artist Malcolm McLaren and his relevance to contemporary practice.


Gregor Muir, ICA Executive Director, is in conversation with Malcolm McLaren’s long-term partner Young Kim, author Michael Bracewell and curator Andrew Wilson, addressing the influence of the artist Malcolm McLaren and his relevance to contemporary practice. As the promulgator of Punk, initially through music and fashion and then into other forms from film and art to design and media, the panel locate McLaren as a leading visual artist whose influence can now be detected across contemporary culture.

The panel discussion is followed by a screening of McLaren’s film Shallow 1-21 (86min).

Starting as a young art student in London’s Goldsmiths College and Central St Martins College of Art and Design, Malcolm McLaren studied painting before experimenting with radical politicised artworks inspired by the Internationale Situationniste, the most famous of which was Punk. McLaren defined Punk as an anti-authoritarian, anti-corporate attitude imbued with a D-I-Y spirit which embraces chaos. All of McLaren’s life-long activities—from being a legendary shop conceptualist, singer/composer/musical artist, lecturer, producer and filmmaker, to politician—are expressions of his art. Throughout, McLaren drew upon on artistic techniques such as détournement (the juxtaposition of pre-existing elements), cut-ups, and the staging of situations to produce radical re-orderings of life, politics and art.

Shallow 1-21 (86min) consists of 21 ‘musical paintings’ that combine musical cut-ups and short clips appropriated from old sex films. The footage is spliced, repeated and slowed down, resulting in a hypnotically-layered and provocative work. 

Michael Bracewell is the author of six novels and three works of non-fiction, including Perfect Tense(2000) and England Is Mine (1997). He writes widely on modern and contemporary art, and his recent publications include Richard Hamilton: Late Works (National Gallery, London, 2012), Damien Hirst, Beautiful Inside My Head Forever (Sotheby's, London 2008) Bridget Riley; Paintings and Related Work(National Gallery, London, 2011), and Gilbert & George: The Complete Postcard Art (2 vols) (Prestel, 2011). He was co-curator of The Dark Monarch: Magic and Modernity in British Art at Tate St Ives, UK (2009) and The Secret Public: Last Days of The British Underground 1978 -1988 (Kunstverein Munich/ICA London 2007). He is a regular contributor to Frieze and The Burlington. Michael Bracewell's selected writings on art, The Space Between, edited by Doro Globus, was published by Ridinghouse, London in 2012.

Young Kim was born in Seoul, Korea but grew up in Long Island, New York. After studying history at Yale University, she went to New York University law school briefly before abandoning it in favour of her passion for the creative arts, particularly the world of fashion and costume. This led her to Paris where she studied fashion at Studio Berçot and met Malcolm McLaren in 1998. After a stint in the fashion world, including as an editor at V magazine/Visionaire, she started working exclusively with McLaren in 2000 as his producer and creative partner crisscrossing through the worlds of art, fashion, music, film, theatre, and media, until his untimely death in 2010. During this time, McLaren returned to his roots as a fine artist, creating new work and exhibiting in art institutions and museums internationally. Besides representing the Estate of Malcolm McLaren she works as a consultant in the art world creating artist collaborations in domains outside of ‘art’.  She is based between Paris and New York.

Andrew Wilson is Curator of Modern and Contemporary British Art and Archives at Tate. Over the past twenty-five years Wilson’s research has focused on post-war art and culture, often with a specific emphasis on wider countercultures through the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s and the development of conceptual art in the 1960s and early 1970s. He has delivered a range of exhibition and display projects at Tate Britain and Tate Modern, including The Simon Sainsbury Bequest to Tate and the National Gallery (2008); Classified: Contemporary British Art (with Clarrie Wallis, 2009); Marcel Duchamp and Richard Hamilton: The Large Glass (with Matthew Gale, 2010); John Golding (2010); Barry Flanagan: Early Works 1965–1982 (with Clarrie Wallis, 2011); Ian Hamilton Finlay (2012); Keith Arnatt: Sausages and Food (2013); and Painting Now: Five Contemporary Artists (with Lizzie Carey-Thomas and Clarrie Wallis, 2013).

Buy tickets to both The Legacy of Malcolm McLaren: The Art and The Legacy of Malcolm McLaren: The Clothes for £12 (full-price and concessions) and £10 (ICA Members).

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