A ‘POWERFUL’ touring exhibition celebrating the work of legendary artist Louise Bourgeois will make its debut in Rugby.
Rugby Art Gallery and Museum will be the first venue to present the new Artist Rooms exhibition celebrating the work of the acclaimed French-American artist, whose eight decades of intense creativity cemented her legacy as a giant of 20th century art.
Born in Paris in 1911, Bourgeois settled in New York in 1938, where she remained for the rest of life, continuing to make art until her death in 2010 at the age of 98.
In a career that spanned most of the avant-garde artistic movements of the 20th century, Bourgeois stayed true to her own unique vision.
Her inventive work, inspired by her own memories and experiences, spanned monumental installations, figurative sculptures, fabric collages and drawings – embodying her famous quote: “I am not what I am, I am what I do with my hands.”
She is perhaps best known for the large-scale spider sculptures that she produced in the last decades of her life, including one she created for the opening of Tate Modern in 2000.
A Rugby Borough Council spokeswoman said: “Artist Rooms: Louise Bourgeois focuses on works produced during the last 20 years of her life, a period of creativity during which Bourgeois re-examined many of her lifelong concerns to create a body of powerful and provocative new work, exploring identity, gender, childhood, family relationships and memory.
“Her use of textiles, including age-worn garments from her household and personal history, imbues her late sculptures with a sense of intimacy and mortality.
“Bourgeois’ art was closely bound up with her life, and she used artmaking as a way to make sense of her experiences. Her sculpture, drawing and writing are characterised by emotional honesty, as she retold the memories and stories that shaped her life, reworking her ideas in different forms and materials including marble, bronze, latex and fabric, compelled by the need to make and re-make.
“Personal, provocative, vulnerable and raw, Bourgeois’ work reaches us with a powerful immediacy more than a decade after her death.”
Artist Rooms, a touring collection of international modern and contemporary art, presents the work of individual artists in solo exhibitions, drawing from a national collection jointly owned by Tate and the National Galleries of Scotland. The exhibition includes works on loan from Artist Rooms, Tate and the Easton Foundation.
Coun Howard Roberts, Rugby Borough Council’s spokesman for leisure and wellbeing, said: “It’s a real coup for Rugby Art Gallery and Museum to showcase the work of one of the world’s most celebrated modern and contemporary artists, and we’re delighted to offer residents and visitors from further afield the opportunity to experience the work of Louise Bourgeois first-hand.”
Artist Rooms: Louise Bourgeois opens at Rugby Art Gallery and Museum on Saturday July 23 and runs until Saturday November 19.
Visit www.ragm.co.uk for more information about exhibitions and events at Rugby Art Gallery and Museum.