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John Latham Exhibition

Hi

If you have ever wondered about the house in Bellenden Road which has a huge book emerging from the front into the street, now you can find out all about it in an exhibition from 2nd October to 2nd November at 210 Bellenden Road, SE15 4BW. The house itself is now an important work of art by John Latham, the artist who lived there. See details extracted below from the press release.
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JOHN LATHAM FLAT TIME HOUSE OPENS, 2 OCTOBER 2008
Opening Exhibition: Distress of a Dictionary,
2 October – 2 November 2008
Flat Time House, 210 Bellenden Road London SE15 4BW
Hours: (during exhibitions): Thursday – Sunday, 11am – 5pm

John Latham (1921 – 2006), one of the most important British artists of the post-war period, lived at FTHo in Peckham, South East London for over 20 years. The House is now home to the John Latham Foundation and the John Latham Archive, and will be the primary location for a 10-month programme of exhibitions and events exploring the artist’s practice, his theoretical ideas and their continued relevance. The opening show, Distress of a Dictionary, will be a solo exhibition exploring the role of language and humour in Latham’s work.

Latham considered the house a ‘living sculpture’, with different rooms taking on the attributes of a living organism. At FTHo, a giant and colourful book-relief sculpture penetrates a large window on the front of the house, known as the Face, into a room called the Mind, in which a permanent installation of works demonstrating Latham’s Time-Base Theory has been maintained. The next room is known as the Brain. Latham described it as the space for ‘rational thought’ and this is where he worked on his theoretical writing and correspondence. The Brain will now be home to the John Latham Archive. The Hand, formerly Latham’s studio, will be the main location for the programme of changing exhibitions and events. The remainder of the house is taken up with what is termed the ‘Body Event’, where eating, sleeping and ‘plumbing’ take place. The name of the house derives from John’s theoretical language, in which ‘Flat Time’ describes the way in which time and all possible events can be represented by the length and width of a flat canvas, demonstrated in
works including Time-Base Roller (1972. Tate Collection).

In the painting and sculpture for which he is best known, Latham’s primary materials included glass, books, canvas and the spray gun. Developing alongside this concise visual language, from the mid-1950s onwards, was a cosmological theory, formulated through his art-making discoveries that considered time and event to be more primary than the established means of understanding, based on space and matter. Termed Time-Base Theory it offers an ordering and unification of all events in the universe including human actions, allowing an understanding of the special status of the artist in society, and is articulated by a permanent installation at FTHo. Latham’s work is held in collections worldwide, including Tate Collection and MoMA.

VISITOR INFORMATION
Flat Time House, 210 Bellenden Road London SE15 4BW
Hours: (during exhibitions): Thursday – Sunday, 11am – 5pm
FTHo will also be open by appointment for private study and research.
Admission: Free

Artist Placement Group (APG): An initiative by Barbara Steveni, APG was co-founded with John Latham, Jeffrey Shaw and Barry Flanagan in 1966. The group pioneered new models for the artist working within industry and government departments. Their work continues to provoke debate around the role of the artist in society, as well as socially engaged and relational art practices. The APG archive was acquired by the Tate Collection in 2005.

For further information about the John Latham Foundation, Archive and Flat Time House, please contact Elisa Kay, Curator at elisa@flattimeho.org.uk, +44 (0)20 7207 4845/+44 (0)7968 052 303.

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