on my island none of this would be true

Group show curated by Chris Rawcliffe

2 February – 17 March 

Naama Arad | Guy Ben-Ner | Verity Birt in collaboration with Holly Graham and Richard-Forbes Hamilton
Edgar–Walker | Gery Georgieva | Joan Jonas | Terence McCormack | Hannah Regel | Mike Seaborne

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arebyte is pleased to present on my island none of this would be true. The exhibition brings together the work of 10 artists from London, Israel and the USA whose practices span sculpture, installation, photography, poetry, video and performance.

on my island none of this would be true explores the various interpretations and contradictions that islands summon in our minds. Islands are the place of freedom and adventure sold to us on billboards at Heathrow Airport but also the morning-after of the UK’s Brexit wet dream. Islands are where identities and cultures meet to do commerce and forge empires, yet they are also the forgotten lands where reptiles are left in a permanent Paleolithic state.

The show takes its title from the last line of a poem called Security, written by Tom Chivers for his book Dark Islands (Test Centre, 2015). Throughout this collection of poems Chivers takes us on a voyage through a mythical urban landscape where he explores the image of the island both literally and metaphorically, as the poems address utopian and dystopian ideas, themes of isolation and escape, and a concern with the natural and urban environment.

For some like JG Ballard’s Robert Maitland, “I am the island” is the cry of a man who is struggling for control over his mind, body and environment. For others like John Donne, who famously wrote, “no man is an island” as he was facing his own demise, all humans are interconnected. on my island none of this would be true observes how artists interpret and reclaim these different narratives to reshape and make sense of the world.