This exhibition presents a new artwork by Bailey (swimming at midnight), which explores family history; simultaneously drawing focus on the evolution of social media from past to present.
The artwork's title is taken from a private family letter, drafted in 1972 by the actor Richard Burton. Only recently rediscovered, this type-written correspondence (a photocopy of the now lost original) was sent to Bailey's aunt and uncle, after being signed by both Burton and his then wife, the actress Elizabeth Taylor. At a time when correspondence was unlike today's social networking applications such as Twitter or Facebook, this typed letter reveals a family man who was 'surrounded by woman and children', who jovially invaded his privacy 'like the secret service'.
Bailey highlights the author's apparent whimsical prose; exposing more text than previous works, such as the series Postscript 2005. 'swimming at midnight' indicates a childhood event - a proposed sleepover attended by Burton's daughter - at which the pool-focussed adventure might occur.
The potential for such youthful excitement under the moon and stars of a summer's night prompts envy in both Burton and his wife; whilst also inciting the viewer to share in this sense of abandonment.
Bailey recalls such rare childhood experiences in the early seventies were only available to the few fortunate families who had swimming pools in their back gardens. Her cousins and their friends were among the lucky ones, living out the Hollywood lifestyle in a north London suburb.
For more information: www.veronicabailey.co.uk