It All Comes Down: a new digital Barbican exhibition


The Barbican and Guildhall School have unveiled It All Comes Down, an online group exhibition featuring newly created works from 13 emerging visual artists on Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning’s Young Visual Arts Group programme.

Produced during the Covid-19 lockdown, the exhibition showcases 70 artworks which explore the impermanence of social structures, the relationship between the individual and the collective and how the self is shaped by a dramatically changing world.

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Emily Marshall’s sculpture in the Barbican Estate

The artworks span various mediums including paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, films and installation, presented alongside writings from the artists, as well as images of the artworks installed at site specific locations across the Barbican Centre and Estate.

The visual identity and online experience of the exhibition was created by the group remotely and collaboratively through virtual ‘making sessions’ via Zoom due to the pandemic.

The artists combined digital and analogue mediums to reflect the new way of working together in the digital space. It All Comes Down is the culmination of a year of workshops and discussions, supported by the groups’s artist mentor Jordan McKenzie.

Members of the Young Visual Arts Group said: “The title of the exhibition, It All Comes Down, was intended to convey that nothing lasts forever – be that structures, organisations, or relationships. This turned out to be uncannily prescient.

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Gooseberries_Hands_20 by Safiye Gray

“Over the past months, more things have come down than anyone could have imagined. Many people have lost their loved ones, their jobs, their sense of security in the world. Still more people have taken to the streets, demanding change from a system that has proved itself broken. Although so much has been lost, new visions have risen from necessity – giving us the tools to express what we cannot countenance.”

This exhibition has been conceived as part of Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning’s Young Visual Arts Group, an annual free programme which commissions a group of young creatives, aged 16-25, to work collectively towards a public exhibition or event, and develop their skills in curating, marketing, design and project planning.

Members of the programme receive support from the Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning team, as well as professional artists and facilitators in developing their creative practice and ideas.

Feature Image of Lay Stevens’ media sculpture in the Barbican Estate. Check out the online exhibit here.

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