Kendell Geers, ‘Love, By Any Means Necessary’




Stephen Friedman Gallery presents ‘Love, By Any Means Necessary’, a solo exhibition of new works by South African artist and curator Kendell Geers who lives and works in Brussels. This follows his recent solo show at Rua Red, Dublin and the exhibition ‘Incarnations: African Art as Philosophy’ that he curated at Palais des Beaux-Arts (BOZAR), Brussels in 2019. The exhibition is accompanied by a booklet and a commissioned essay by Yala Kisukidi, Philosopher and Curator of Yango II Biennale, Kinshasa 2020.

The title of the exhibition derives from the protest movements of the 1960s and is inspired by a statement by Malcolm X about the use of violence in political liberation. At the centre of the exhibition is a large-scale black and white neon spelling out ‘REVOLUTION’ in reverse so that the hidden word ‘LOVE’ reads forwards. The artist explains, “In the wake of more than a century marked by affluence, we now stand at a dangerous crossroads… The Land Rights Claims in South Africa, the fence along the USA border, abortion rights in Alabama, the European refugee crisis, the ‘gilets jaunes’, Brexit and climate change are not separate problems, but all simply facets of one larger problem of disintegration, dissolution, alienation, denial, segmentation, prejudice and bigotry in the name of profit.” In today’s highly charged socio-political climate perhaps the most subversive act of all is to love. In the gallery window another neon spells out the letters FUC KING HELL. This play on words is characteristic of Geers’ use of language in his practice. A wordsmith and a trickster, in this exhibition Geers aims to put love back into the revolution “by any means necessary”.Geers also draws inspiration from the contradictions inherent in his identity as an African artist. Describing himself as an ‘AniMystikAKtivist’, he weaves together diverse Afro-European traditions, including animism, alchemy, mysticism, ritual and a complex socio-political activism laced with humour and irony.

Duration 07 February 2020 - 05 March 2020
Times Tuesday–Friday, 10am–6pm Saturday, 11am–5pm
Cost Free
Venue Stephen Friedman Gallery
Address 25-28 Old Burlington Street, London, W1S 3AN
Contact / info@stephenfriedman.com / www.stephenfriedman.com/

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