Karl Holmqvist is an artist whose primary material is language.
His inventive re-renderings of words and phrases take various forms including artist’s books, posters, wall drawings, sculpture, videos and live performances. Borrowing from generic types of speech or written word, ranging from common sayings to literary references, from popular music to political activism, Holmqvist repositions these sampled fragments in new contexts, allowing for ambiguity and double meanings to emerge.
This exhibition comprised of new printed canvases, a knitted blanket, concrete poetry published as leporellos, wall drawings and a video. Collectively, these works unpacked the many operations of language, how it can occupy space and provoke images within the viewers’ imagination. The title READ DEAR is a visual word game and a playful command that invokes Gallery 3’s previous function as one of Hampstead Central Library’s reading rooms, before the Victorian building was repurposed as an art centre in 1965.