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Regional and international artists to celebrate Coventry’s global connections at new exhibition

Regional and international artists will celebrate Coventry’s global connections when they showcase their work at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum as part of a festival of contemporary art.


(2 Masks (Pollux & Castor), Sculpture Artwork by Lorsen Camps 2018, Photo by John Bodkin)

The second Coventry Biennial will feature new and existing artworks in exhibitions, events and activities exploring collaboration and togetherness as well as globalisation and inequality. The Biennial brings together the work of individual artists, duos and groups from Coventry, across the UK and internationally.

This year’s exhibition, titled ‘The Twin’ will celebrate Coventry’s relationship with its 26 twin cities, and mark 75 years since the first official twinning of modern cities, which was between Coventry and Volgograd, Russia in 1944.

Artworks will be displayed in historic buildings and galleries throughout the city from Friday, October 4 until Sunday, November 24 with the exhibition at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum remaining open until Sunday, January 26 offering a greater opportunity to engage with this exciting programme.

From an installation featuring two large-scale photographs of a pregnant belly displayed in the Herbert’s covered court, to experimental digital art and life-sized outlines of military drones, there will be plenty for visitors to experience.

Highlights also include the late David Cheeseman’s final sculpture and new research commissions by Grace Williams and Stephen Cornford in collaboration with the University of Warwick.

Alongside the art on display across the Herbert’s temporary exhibition spaces, visitors can enjoy yoga sessions taking place every Saturday, inspiring a spirit of care and friendship and a remake of John Berger’s iconic 1972 documentary Ways of Seeing through one-minute videos, which will be shown on Wednesday, October 9.

There will also be a chance to join Ryan Hughes, Founder and Artistic Director of the Coventry Biennial, and exhibiting artist Katrina Cowling, winner of the Sculpture Production Award 2019, in conversation at the Herbert a week later on October 16.

A screening of films by Mathew Parkin exploring the interplay between private, public, individual and universal will also be shown on Wednesday, November 13.

Rosie Addenbrooke, Exhibition and Events Manager at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, said: “We are thrilled to be a part of the Coventry Biennial and highlight the fact that Coventry is a global city where people from across the world are welcome.

“The Twin is a fantastic way to promote the work of local communities and provides a platform for contemporary artists to bring their vision to life.

“In the wider programme for 2019, there are opportunities to speak to the artists involved, learn new skills, enjoy yoga sessions and really immerse yourself within the exhibition.

Ryan Hughes, Founder and Artistic Director of the Coventry Biennial added: “We're delighted to be able to present such a substantial exhibition at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum as a part of Coventry Biennial 2019.

“The large group exhibition in the galleries and among the collection at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum perfectly complements the other major group exhibition we have produced at The Row, a rough-and-ready disused NHS facility just a few minutes’ walk away on Ironmonger Row.

“The two spaces couldn't be more different and that really complements the topics and issues which our artists are exploring and responding to throughout the Biennial.”

Bookings for all events can be made online on a pay what you can basis. For more information visit