Art UK is delighted to announce the launch of the Ben Uri Gallery and Museum's guide on the Bloomberg Connects app.
The Bloomberg Connects app is a free digital guide where you can explore content from numerous cultural organisations. Wherever you are in the world, you can access a range of content, either to add to your experience viewing the gallery in person, or to enjoy from the comfort of your own home. The Ben Uri Gallery and Museum's guide is an exciting addition to the diverse array of cultural institutions currently represented on the app.
The Ben Uri Gallery and Museum is both a virtual museum and a physical museum, with the latter, located on Boundary Road, St John's Wood, reopening to the public on 11th January 2023 following a period of refurbishment.
The museum was founded in 1915 by the Jewish artist Lazar Berson who had been born in Skopichky (then part of the Russian Empire and now Skapiškis, Lithuania). As the gallery's guide on the Bloomberg Connects app explains, this was 'to provide support for fellow Jewish immigrant artists working outside the cultural mainstream.' Since 2002 the gallery has broadened its remit 'to include immigrant artists from all ethnicities, nationalities, religions (and none), who have made a distinct contribution to British art since 1900.' The collection consists of '880 works by 390 artists, 70% immigrant and 29% women, from 45 different countries of birth' including works by Bomberg, Pissarro and Wolmark. Ben Uri Gallery and Museum's guide features a range of text and audio content to explore the gallery's vast collection both on- and off-site.
You can explore highlights of the current exhibition, 'Joy,' on display at the gallery from 11th January 2023 to 17th February 2023.
The guide explains, 'Ben Uri Gallery and Museum is delighted to be one of the National Gallery's nine regional collection partners for the virtual exhibition 'Fruits of the Spirit', pairing Ben Uri's Mornington Crescent, Summer Morning II by Frank Auerbach with the National Gallery's Sunflowers by Vincent van Goch to explore the 'fruit' of Joy.'
This exhibition, as explained in the guide, 'explores the concept of Joy through a selection of artworks from the Ben Uri collection.'
In Mornington Crescent – Summer Morning II by Frank Auerbach, as Sarah, Director of Ben Uri, suggests in the accompanying audio recording, Auerbach 'uses a particularly vibrant palette to show a summer morning, and although it's crisscrossed with horizontals and shapes which conjure up the choking London traffic, it's actually a life-affirming, vibrant scene.'
Another striking work in the exhibition 'Joy' is Philip Sutton's Claud's Still Life. In the guide, Sutton is quoted to have said, 'For me colour is all about invention, having the freedom to choose from a kaleidoscope of options rather than matching reality. I feel like a wild musician running through an orchestra, playing any instrument I wish.'
To explore more artworks on display in this exhibition, take a look at the Ben Uri Gallery and Museum's guide on the Bloomberg Connects app.
Another highlight of the Ben Uri Gallery and Museum's guide is the exhibition 'Art, Identity, Migration.' The gallery is the museum partner for the London Art Fair 2023, held at the Business Design Centre in Islington from 18th to 22nd January 2023, and this exhibition is on display at the fair.
The exhibition, as explained in the guide, 'explores key concepts of art, identity and migration through a selection of works from the collection reflecting three waves of migration to Britain: Eastern European Jewish migration c.1880–1914, those fleeing persecution under the Nazis (both Jewish and non-Jewish), and new postwar multicultural communities.'
One key work from the display is Home Performance 1 by Güler Ates. As is explained in the guide, 'Ates' practice explores concepts of displacement, particularly the notion that we carry our 'mental home … wherever we go.''
Another highlight from the exhibition is Tam Joseph's The Hand Made Map of the World.
An excerpt from the audio recording available in the guide notes, 'Really, what Tam does here is to combine his interest in the natural world with the sometimes seemingly arbitrary territorial divisions. He draws on childhood recollections of the map of the British Empire and those famous areas of pink, and his later awareness of the divisive legacy of colonialism, playfully but also deliberately reordering conventional geographies, blurring boundaries and suggesting new and unexpected possibilities for the world political map.'
The guide features a range of other content including collection highlights, past exhibitions and other Ben Uri activities such as the Ben Uri Research Unit and the Ben Uri Arts and Health Institute.
To explore more of the Ben Uri Gallery and Museum, download the Bloomberg Connects app today!
Jolif Guest, Collections Content and Liaison Officer