Kevin Henderson - Zebra
Kevin Henderson - Zebra
9 November - 22 December 2001
Kevin henderson occupies an unusual place in Scottish Art. Firstly, he has for many years used 'actions' and performances to express and explore ideas; a practice much more common among artists working in mainland Europe. Secondly, he also uses the writings of authors and artists as starting points for ideas, or frameworks to which ideas can be related. thirdly, such ideas are conveyed and interrelated through his use of a wide range of of media; film (video and photography), drawing, painting, sculpture, writing, poetry, performance itself and combinations of these in the forms of installations. All could be found in this exhibition which mainly consisted of new and recent work but which covered the previous 14 years. Public readings, a performance and a discussion all took place as part of the exhibition.
In room 1, the novel Jealousy by Robbie-Grillet was a starting point for this installation. The book deals with relationships between characters staying in a colonial-style house, set in a banana plantation. In the work Now the Room is Empty, Henderson adopted the role of narrator; remote, as in the novel, to interweave thoughts conveyed using simple furniture, firebricks, his own poetry and documentation. In room 2, his walk from a hotel room in Paris to visit the tombstone of the Dadaist Tristian Tzara was recalled; and in room 3, a wishing well in the Black Isle in Ross and Cromarty, provided the context for an action and performance Shoeshine. Elsewhere in the exhibition, a large black floor sculpture Blazon evokes René Magritte's Surrealism and the language of dreams, whilst Marcel Breuer's Bauhaus designs were directly referenced in a drawing on paper made with graphite and shoe polish.
Describing Shoeshine which incorporated a railway sleeper, two stools and 364 photographs of the wishing well and surrounding trees, Henderon wrote:
" The Shoeshine is a form of labour that has a tendency to polarise our ideas about labour, about work. It accentuates notions of (skill-less) exchange within the market place; it also makes explicit our prejudices and aspirations in view of our ideas regarding labour. From another perspective, there are strong religious connotations. The Well is a place of ritual, within a predominantly rural agrarian community, but not far from the ever-spreading city of Inverness. The waters are understood by many to have healing powers. In exchange for the water that people drink from the Well they leave behind, tied or hung to trees, peieces of cloth, hats, shoes, tinsel, underwear. I understand this ritual (exchange) as a communal doing, woven through notions of social and political efficacy."
The performance which took place throughout the day on Sunday 17 November, was documented and elements of it were later incorporated into room 3. This was Kevin Henderson's first major exhibition in Scotland.
Kevin Henderson was born in Chiangi, Singapore in 1963. He graduated from Gray's School of Art, Aberdeen, and studied at Oregon State University, USA. In 1995 he took up a teaching post at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, University of Dundee, where he has since worked as Programme Director of the Master of Fine Art course.
He has contributed to reviews, journals and published experimental and conjectural texts on the painter Pieter Breugel the Elder, and the filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky - in addition to texts about other artists working in Scotland such as Ian Howard, Derrick Guild, Lei Cox, Rebecca Milling, Paul Dignan, Cora Cluett, Leena Nammari, Graeme Todd, Arthur Watson and Gareth Fisher.
Related EVENTS AND PERFORMANCES
Poetry Reading by Kevin Henderson and David Hopkins
Saturday 16 November, 2pm
Performance by Kevin Henderson
Sunday 17 November, 10.30am to 3.30pm.
Thursday 21 November, 1pm to 2.30pm.
We wish to thank the following for their support of the exhibition: The Scottish Arts Council; Fine Art Research, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design; Rayographics; Edinburgh; Inglis Allen, Kirkcaldy. For further information about the exhibitions or events, please ask at the reception desk or contact Inverleith House
All work courtesy of the artist.
- I still believe in miracles
- Raoul De Keyser: Paintings 1967 to 2012
- Nicolas Party: Boys and Pastel
- John Chamberlain
- Autumn Screening: Anne-Marie Copestake & Duncan Marquisswith speakers Isla Leaver-Yap & Francis McKee.
- Alex Dordoy: persistencebeatsresistance
- Corin Sworn
- Isa Genzken: Botanical Garden
- Tony Conrad: Invented Acoustical Tools 1969 - 2014
- Derek Roberts: Northern Paintings
- Ciara Phillips: And More, Nature Printed and Rory McEwen: The Tweed Road
- Mostly West: Franz West & Artist Collaborations
- Dan Colen: The Illusion of Life
- Luke Fowler with Toshiya Tsunoda and John Haynes
- William McKeown (1962 - 2011)
- Philip Guston: Late Paintings
- Andy Hope 1930: When Dinosaurs Become Modernists
- Claude Cahun (1884 - 1954)
- Sue Tompkins
- Thomas Houseago: The Beat of the Show (Indoor Sculpture)
- Robert Rauschenberg: Botanical Vaudeville
- Andrew Kerr - So Ensconced/Maya Deren
- Victoria Morton with films by Anne-Marie Copestake
- Vincent Fecteau and Forests and Gardens of South India: Hugh Cleghorn (1820 - 1895)
- Joan Mitchell
- Marc Camille Chaimowicz
- Hayley Tompkins: Autobuilding
- Cerith Wyn Evans
- John McCracken
- KARLA BLACK: SCULPTURES
- Tony Swain: Impure Passports
- Nick Evans: Primary School
- Louise Bourgeois: Nature Study
- John Hutton Balfour (1808-1884): Nature Study
- Richard Hamilton: Protest Pictures
- Juergen Teller - Awailable
- Lilian Snelling
- Andrew Miller - Sixes and Sevens
- William Eggleston - Portraits 1974
- Smith/Stewart: Enter Love and Enter Death
- Roni Horn - Angie and Emily Dickinson
- Rudolf Stingel
- Rungiah and Govindoo - South Indian Botanical Drawings 1826-1853
- Robert Ryman at Inverleith House
- Douglas Gordon - Superhumanatural
- Mat Collishaw
- Ian Hamilton Finlay - Sentences
- Mark Leckey - Jackin' World
- Keith Farquhar - New Work
- Robert Therrien
- Jim Lambie - Kebabylon
- Andy Warhol - Private Drawings From the 1950s
- Gary Rough - Mantelpiece
- Simon Periton - Mint Poisoner
- Julian Schnabel
- Hellen van Meene - Japan Series
- Ruth Vollmer
- Cathy Wilkes
- The Dapuri Drawings
- Alan Charlton
- Cy Twombly
- Stanley Kubrick - Still Moving Pictures 1945-1950
- Lucy McKenzie and Paulina Olowska - Heavy Duty
- Ulrich Ruckheim
- Franz West - Meeting Points
- Ed Ruscha – The Mountains
- Stella Ross-Craig - Drawings of British Plants
- The British Art Show Five
- John Hutton Balfour's Teaching Diagrams (1845-1879)
- Laura Owens - New Work
- Lawrence Weiner - Time + Place
- Bloomberg New Contemporaries
- David Austen: New Work
- Richard Tuttle: Grey Walls Work
- Paul Keir: New Work &; Susan Derges: The River Taw
- Susan Derges: The River Taw
- Myron Stout
- Melissa Kretschmer: Tsunami (The Caledonian Hall, RBGE)
- Carl Andre: 12 Isohedra
- Angus Hood and Christine Frew
- In Visible Light: Photography and Classification in Art, Science and the Everyday, various artists
- The British Art Show 4, various artists
- Callum Innes
- Cecilia Vicuna: Precario: Words & Thread
- Absolut Blue and White, featuring; Catriona Grant, Gary Rough, David Shrigley
- Alan Johnston: Haus Wittgenstein/ Inverleith House
- Chris Drury: Vessel: Sculpture 1990-1995
- Lothar Baumgarten: Conservatory (The Glass Houses, RBGE)
- Raymond Booth: Japonica Magnifica, from the Fine Art Society, London
- Margaret Stones: The Flora of Louisiana (from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge. USA)
- herman de vries: flora
- Andy Goldsworthy: Hand to Earth - Sculpture 1976-1990 (1990)
- Chris Drury: Shelters and Baskets
- Archive (1)
Browse through our diverse range of formal and informal education programmes for people of all ages and at all levels
RBGE publications include a range of titles with books on botany and botanical taxonomy, gardening and horticulture, art and history, children’s books and Guidebooks for all of our Gardens.
Knowledge Exchange links the research community with others.
Searchable Resource Centres
View our selection of searchable resource centres.
Check our latest news and connect with our experts
Find the ideal venue for your corporate event
Your dream wedding
The perfect setting to host your truly unique wedding.
Find out how you can support our work at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.