Hurvin Anderson: Salon Paintings

12 November 2023 to 3 March 2024 Hastings Contemporary

A major solo exhibition of paintings and drawings by Hurvin Anderson, celebrating his Barbershop series.

This autumn sees Hasting Contemporary proudly host a major review of Hurvin Anderson’s (b.1965) paintings and drawings, including examples of his very latest work. Hurvin Anderson: Salon Paintings (18 November 2023 – 3 March 2024) will feature selected works from Anderson’s celebrated Barbershop series, which depict the interiors of traditional men’s hairdressers and evoke a profound sense of history, memory and place.

The exhibition is presented in association with The Hepworth Wakefield and Kistefos Museum, Norway.  Anderson first painted a Birmingham-based barbershop in 2006. For more than 15 years, Anderson has repeatedly reworked the same barbershop in a multitude of ways to experiment with key concerns in modern and contemporary painting, such as the tension between abstraction and figuration, and the painterly possibilities of capturing memories and experiences. By deconstructing and recreating the scene with objects derived from photographic documentation, Anderson explores the resonance of an image, raising questions about seeing, history, authenticity and the nature of experience. To give a tangible sense of his creative process, the exhibition will also include a display of Anderson’s sketches, drawings and studies.

The exhibition presents an opportunity to enjoy the most comprehensive presentation of the Barbershop series to date; from the very first painting and initial studio drawings made in 2006 to a new large-scale drawing and a painting begun in 2022, which are the largest and final works in the series. To give a tangible sense of his creative process, the exhibition will also include a display of Anderson’s sketches, drawings and studies.

Also on display will be some of Anderson's most political works, such as Is it OK to be Black? (2016), which includes depictions of two of the most significant figures in the American Civil Rights movement, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X. The title refers to a mis-hearing of the classic barber’s question, ‘Is it ok at the back?’.

Commenting on the exhibition, Hurvin Anderson said: “The Barbershop is a subject that I have returned to throughout my career, as a site that was a point of connection to Caribbean culture. In repeating the image, deconstructing it and putting it back together again, the series has also become a meditative exploration of painting itself.”

A new book, edited by Eleanor Clayton and Isabella Maidment and published by The Hepworth Wakefield, will accompany the exhibition.

Hurvin Anderson: Salon Paintings is organised by The Hepworth Wakefield in collaboration with Hastings Contemporary and Kistefos Museum, Norway. Prior to its arrival at Hastings Contemporary from 18 November, the exhibition opened at The Hepworth Wakefield on 26 May 2023 and will next travel to Kistefos in Norway (April – October 2024).

Hurvin Anderson: Salon Paintings is supported by Richard and Debbi Burston, Clore Wyndham, Thomas Dane Gallery and Michael Werner Gallery.

Further Information: Hurvin Anderson - Hastings Contemporary